Weekend Preview (May 11-14)
Superior City FC (3-0-0) at Granite City FC (1-3-0) | UPSL Premier League Game Thursday, May 11th | Tiger Stadium (St. Cloud, MN) | 7:30 PM CT FREE Admission | Livestream available on Youtube | 74 degrees and scattered storms GAME PREVIEW: After obtaining their first ever home win last Saturday, Superior will look to continue their strong start to their first year of UPSL play. This game was moved from Friday to Thursday, and the short notice will leave some key players stuck back home for the visitors. Roster management becomes a priority for Superior head coach Otto Berti, who will have two games in three days. Superior's Mally Lumsden has proven strong at the UPSL level, and will hope to continue his scoring streak. Granite City have had a rough start to their 2023 UPSL campaign, dropping 5-1 and 4-1 results to St. Croix FC and Minneapolis City FC. The squad has a ton of youth to build off of, including 2022 MN Small Schools Mr. Soccer award winner Andrew Pitzner, in addition to some St. Cloud State talent. This game will be dictated by how Superior decides to juggle the roster, and with Granite City desperately looking for a positive result, this game could be a tight one. WHO ARE THEY? Granite City FC were formed in 2016 as an independent club, playing friendlies throughout Minnesota. The club was formed as the first locally owned pro development soccer club based in St. Cloud, MN, aimed at providing players from Central Minnesota the opportunities and training to help them achieve their goals of participating at a higher level of soccer in both a professional and positive environment. The club has a partnership with St. Cloud State University, as well as other local colleges and overseas clubs. The club joined the UPSL ahead of the 2017 season and have played in the Midwest-West conference for the past six years. HOW DID THEY DO LAST YEAR? Granite City FC competed in the UPSL Premier Midwest-West Conference during the 2022 season, finishing in 8th place with a 3-7-0 record. LOOKING FORWARD: Superior City return to the NBC Spartan Sports Complex two days later for home game at 6:00 PM CT on Saturday, May 13th against Worthington Community FC. Granite City play away at St. Paul Blackhawks on May 18th. HISTORY AGAINST GRANITE CITY FC: This is the first meeting between Superior City FC and Granite City FC. WHERE CAN WE FIND THEM?
You can find Granite City FC at www.granitecityfc.com or on Facebook (Granite City FC "Rocks"), Twitter (@GCFCUpsl) and Instagram (granitecityfc)
Superior City FC (0-0-0) vs Vlora FC (0-0-0) | UPSL Womens Premier League Game
Friday, May 12th | NBC Spartan Sports Complex (Superior, WI) | 8:00 PM CT
Tickets online or $10 at the gate | Livestream on iFan Sports Network | 52 degrees and cloudy GAME PREVIEW Superior City FC's womens team kicks off their first ever season at home against preseason favorites Vlora FC. Superior are still missing half of their roster until college classes finish, so expect a very short bench for this first game. The roster on Friday will be led by UW-Superior standout Niya Wilson and UM-Duluth midfielder Victoria Thorson. A trio of Esko High School girls, Gwendolyn Lilly, Abrianna Madill, and Reese Kuklinski, will get their first pre-professional soccer experience on Friday night. Vlora has built an exceptionally strong roster, with former professional Lauen Ives leading the way. Some key support players include former UW-Superior fullback Maggie McAllister and MN Ms. Soccer finalist Lizzy Lone. WHO ARE THEY? Vlora FC were founded in 2012 by Adi Bilani, and the club's current headquarters are in Burnsville, MN. Vlora currently has men's teams at multiple levels, including the Minnesota Amateur Soccer League's First Division, and the United Premier Soccer League's Premier Division. Vlora has been a UPSL team since 2019, and have won the Midwest-West division twice (2019, 2022). Vlora FC added a women's team in 2023 and have a youth program underneath their senior men's and women's teams. The club prides itself on its diverse player pool, with players coming from many different nationalities and ethnicities, and the club's namesake, Vlora, refers to a city in Albania, Bilani's home country. HOW DID THEY DO LAST YEAR? This is Vlora FC's first year fielding a women's team. LOOKING FORWARD: Superior City FC will continue UPSL play on the road as they travel to Minnetonka, MN for a game against Tonka-Fusion FC on Saturday, May 20th at 4:00 PM. Vlora host Northern Tide FC on May 14th. HISTORY AGAINST VLORA FC: This is the first ever meeting between Superior City FC and Vlora FC's women's teams. WHERE CAN WE FIND THEM? You can find Vlora FC at vlorafc.com or on their Facebook (Vlora FC), Instagram (vlorafc_women) or Twitter (@VloraFC_Women) pages.
Superior City FC (3-0-0) vs Worthington Community FC (0-1-1) | UPSL Premier League Game
Saturday, May 13th | NBC Spartan Sports Complex (Superior, WI) | 6:00 PM CT
Tickets online or $10 at the gate | Livestream on iFan Sports Network | 46 degrees and cloudy
GAME PREVIEW Superior City FC will have a day of rest before defending their home turf against the Bulls from Worthington. The roster will be dependant on how Thursday's game unfolds, but expect a strong lineup for the home squad. This game will surely be a fast paced game, and quite possibly an offensive shootout. Worthington will have to deal with heavy legs after a seven hour trip, but the squad brings a ton of talent offensively, and will test Superior's back line. Leading goalscorer Prince Lebbi Jr and forward Salvador Nava lead the squad, who lost to St. Croix 5-0 last week and tied Maplebrook 58ers 2-2 the week before. Expect a physical game, with the result dependent on who's back line can hold up the longest. WHO ARE THEY? Worthington Community FC were founded in 2022 as a project lead by Patrick Mahoney, Eswin Hernande and Jason Johnson, who fielded U17 and U19 teams last year. A small community of 14,000 people, Worthington supports a very strong soccer scene. After the success of the Worthington High School soccer the past few years, large numbers for their youth teams, and a high-level adult soccer league which has been fueled for the last 30 years by a large Mexican-American population in the Worthington-area, the club decided to enter a senior squad into the UPSL. The UPSL squad is primarily composed of the top players in the 20+ team adult league, many of which were former pros or semi-pros in their native countries, in addition to emerging high school standouts from the area. HOW DID THEY DO LAST YEAR? This is Worthington Community FC's first year as a Men's senior-level club. LOOKING FORWARD: Superior City return to the NBC Spartan Sports Complex for another home game at 7:30 PM CT on Wednesday, May 17th against FC Minneapolis. Worthington play host to Austin Villa FC on May 18th. HISTORY AGAINST WORTHINGTON COMMUNITY FC: This is the first meeting between Superior City FC and Worthington Community FC. WHERE CAN WE FIND THEM? You can find Worthington Community FC at worthingtoncommunityfc.com or on Facebook (WorthingtonCommunityFC), Instagram (worthingtoncommunityfc) or Twitter (@worthingtoncfc)
Superior Wolfpack FC (0-2-0) at Union Eau Claire FC (2-0-0) | WPASL League Game Sunday, May 14th | Bollinger Field (Eau Claire, WI) | 5:00 PM CT Free Admission | Livestream TBA (Likely on Union's FB) | 61 degrees and partly cloudy
GAME PREVIEW The first match of the WPASL season will bring its challenges for the Wolfpack. The Superior squad is young this year, but the team has built some decent chemistry over their first two preseason games, although neither has resulted in success on the scoresheet. UW-Superior's Jack Burmood has looked solid in the back for the Pack, and the youngsters up top, Denzel Majwega and Vince Trok, will be looking to break the scoring drought. Union Eau Claire walked through their preseason, defeating Homeboyz FC 3-1 and Athletico Juvenil (Baldwin) 12-0. The Eau Claire squad has improved their roster over the offseason, picking up offensive threat Kai Koreen and former All-League defender Zak Haji. Lucas Zumwalt will be a dangerous returning winger and a centerback pairing of Sadith Osseni and Chacha Nacius will make the game challenging for Superior. WHO ARE THEY? Union Eau Claire FC were formed in 2021 and joined the Wisconsin Primary Amateur Soccer League (WPASL) for their inaugural season of play in 2022. The club was formed by former Bateaux FC players Sadith Osseni, Larry Mboga, Hebert Engop and Chacha Nacius, with hopes to promote soccer in the Eau Claire area while bringing people of different backgrounds together to platform their talents. The name Union Eau Claire stems from symbolism of the confluence of the Chippewa and Eau Claire rivers where the city of Eau Claire sits, and the club's hope to bring people of various cultures together. The term "Union" is French and means togetherness, a fitting name for a club whose home city of Eau Claire means "Clear Water" in French. HOW DID THEY DO LAST YEAR? Union Eau Claire FC finished fourth in the WPASL last year with a record of 7-4-1. LOOKING FORWARD: Superior Wolfpack FC will travel to Walker Park in St. Louis Park, MN for a 6:00 PM game against league newcomers Homeboyz FC on Sunday, May 21st. Union face inter-city rival Bateaux FC on Sunday, May 21st.
HISTORY AGAINST UNION EAU CLAIRE FC: This will be the third meeting between the clubs, with the squads splitting results last season. WHERE CAN WE FIND THEM? You can find Union Eau Claire FC at www.unionecfc.com or on Facebook (Union Eau Claire FC), Instagram (@unionecfc) and Twitter (@UnionECFC)