Julia Bagg reports on the Fort Lauderdale Strikers' 2013 season opener. Coach Daryl Shore and midfielders Scott Gordon and Mike Dietze spoke about their expectations for this year.
South Florida’s only professional soccer team is aiming for its first win in Saturday night’s season opener.
“We’re looking to come out fast and have a good showing early on in the season, especially the first game,” midfielder Scott Gordon said. “We really can make a run for [the] championship.”
Gordon is encouraged by his team’s performance in the previous two years. The Fort Lauderdale Strikers made the playoffs both times, even advancing to the championship game, where they lost in his rookie season.
“We’ve definitely proved we can make a run,” Gordon said.
The 2013 roster includes new recruits from South Florida to New Jersey, Jamaica, and Haiti.
“I was very excited,” said rookie New Jersey midfielder Mike Dietze on signing a contract with the team. “I’m not a speed demon, I play in the middle of the park. I’m fairly technical and like to keep the ball moving."
Coach Daryl Shore notes the red and yellow bring “a really good brand of soccer” to the field.
“We like to play attack-style soccer,” he said.
Shore points to recent U.S. men and women’s soccer success in giving his team a boost.
“The interest of our national team with the last couple of World Cups has sparked interest,” he said.
Their shortened North American Soccer League spring season opens Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at Lockhart Stadium, at 1350 NW 55th St. in Fort Lauderdale. The Strikers face Canadian team F.C. Edmonton.
Season tickets start at $144. Game day single tickets start at $15 dollars. For more details and to buy tickets online, go to www.strikers.com.
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