OLYMPIA, WA— The goalWA.net slogan is “Washington – The STATE of Soccer.” No wonder then that we remain supportive of seeing adult semi-pro men’s soccer take hold in Olympia, capital of our state. To coin an ancient phrase, it’s a ‘capital idea.’
That’s why we are so excited to hear that the Oly Town Artesians will be joining the Evergreen Premier League in 2017! It’s the culmination of years of history and recent efforts to raise the game in our capital at the local level.
Oly Town FC owner Tim Smith looks forward to taking what his club has established indoors to the outdoor soccer realm.”We’re excited to showcase local talent. This is an opportunity to represent our community and we could not be more proud of where we come from. Olympia’s soccer community has demonstrated its ability to come together to accomplish great things. That’s what we’ve done in the WISL, and that’s what we expect to do as members of the EPLWA.” Read the entire press release at EPLWA.com.
Soccer in Olympia
Soccer is already a big deal in Olympia. It has a history at all levels from youth to adult to semi-pro ( or elite amateur.) The Saints of Saint Martin’s (Lacey) and the Geoducks of The The Evergreen State College represent Oly in NCAA 2 and NAIA play. The Clippers of South Puget Sound CC battle in the NWAC.
Adult clubs play in the Southwest Washington Soccer Association. Ballyhoo Football Club was founded for Over-45 adult play. Olympia City FC began playing recently. The RAC is a hub of soccer activity outdoors.
Indoor soccer has always been big in Olympia, dating back to the days when the Tacoma Stars were just up I-5 and packing the Tacoma Dome in the old MISL. More recently elite amateur clubs have played regionally. The Tumwater Pioneers were in the PASL and the Oly Town Artesians got their start in the WISL where they began play in 2014..
Evergreen State Head Coach John Purtteman has a history with indoor soccer. He even had an outdoor ‘rink’ moved up into the hills over Hood Canal for his former Golden Goals Soccer Camp. Then he saw it move back to the campus at Evergreen State where it is now in the Evergreen Pavilion.
Olympia has an outdoor elite adult soccer history, too. In the 1980’s the Flyers of Olympia FC competed in the Western Washington City League. Read all about that team here.
More recently there was an effort to build a club calling itself Capital City FC.
The Sounders U23’s of the PDL annually play the Portland Timbers U23’s in Tumwater, drawing their biggest home crowd of their season.
Austin Kelley tributes
It has been a long, sorrow-filled fall for Olympia-area soccer and the Artesians. The drowning death of Austin Kelley gave many players, families and soccer fans pause to reflect on the importance of kindness and community. Olympia showed they are indeed a close-knit group in the soccer scene of Washington. The Artesians themselves showed that as an organization they can weather the storm and proceed with love, class and unity.
Austin Kelley very likely would have played for the Artesians in the Evergreen Premier League. His mates will carry on, knowing that his love for the sport and leadership over the years is part of why Olympia is joining Washington’s statewide outdoor league.
Which brings us December 2016, and the announcement of the Oly Town FC Artesians joining the Evergreen Premier League (EPLWA) as the 8th club in the statewide outdoor elite adult amateur soccer competition. The Artesians are going for it—going for it to bring Olympia the highest level of outdoor play it’s seen outside of college.
The STATE of Soccer is excited to see this capital turn of events.
Olympia is ready to jump into the game.