As the dust settles for the 2015 National Premier Soccer League season, FC Wichita are proud to have accomplished a very successful inaugural year. Just four short months ago, 36 talented and determined soccer players from 12 different countries, including 6 local players from Wichita soccer programs, launched into the unknown. An innovative coaching staff unified and motivated these men to bring Wichita its first soccer championship at a higher level. What started out as a vision with a goal of producing a competitive team that would represent the City of Wichita, has rapidly come to reality.
“From the very first training session the team had we spoke about this club’s history and how we were literally building it everyday. We discussed how this team would be the one to set the bar for seasons to come, and the squad did not disappoint. There are so many people that deserve a great big thank you for all the blood, sweat, and tears they put in to making everyday operations happen, in addition to the players.” -Coach Inlow
FC Wichita clinched the 2015 NPSL South Central Conference Championship with a final record of 11-3 and outscoring the competition more than 3 to 1. An offense spearheaded by team point-leader and MVP Matt Clare averaged 2.5 goals per game (3rd in Conference). The Conference’s best defense, anchored by GK Mau Vargas and Veteran Kevin Ten Eyck, conceded an average of only 0.79 goals per game ranking 3rd in the Region and 6th in the country. The cohesive and disciplined team was the only club in the Conference (and 1 of only 9 teams across the 70-team league) to not see a single red card the entire season.
Many factors contributed to the championship run, but the catalyst was a seven game win-streak over the course of a month (6/9-7/10) that included victories against the defending Conference Champions (Tulsa Athletics) and a double over this year’s title challengers (Corinthians FC SA). The season concluded as Wichita was eliminated from the South Region Finals by Myrtle Beach in a tough 3-1 loss in South Carolina.
The season wasn’t short of emotion and memorable moments: the heartbreaking 1-0 loss in the home opener; the dramatic 2-1 Father’s Day victory thanks to a Clare penalty just moments before the final whistle; the convincing 4-0 win over the then-undefeated CFCSA; and the cheeky punt from Kevin Ten Eyck to help win the Conference in front of a sold-out home crowd in the season’s final home game. What was your favorite?
The club’s first-year success was underscored with an at-large berth in the 2016 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup. Featuring in the 103rd edition of the oldest soccer competition in the US achieves an early goal set by the organization. More on the US Open Cup.
2015 South Central Conference
|2||Corinthians FC of San Antonio||14||10||3||1||41||19||22||31|
Regular Season by the Numbers:
- Games played – 14
- Wins – 11
- Ties – 0
- Losses – 3
- Goals scored – 34
- 2.5 average per game
- 3rd in Conference
- Goals conceded – 11
- 0.79 average per game
- 1st in Conference
- 3rd in Region
- 6th in NPSL
- Shutouts – 6
- Red cards – 0
Awards and Accolades:
Awards and Accolades:
- NPSL South Central Conference Champions 2015
- Lamar Hunt US Open Cup Berth
- NPSL Staples “Make More Happen” Goal of the Year – Kevin Ten Eyck
- 2015 All-NPSL First Team – Kevin Ten Eyck & Matt Clare
- 2015 NPSL Supporters XI First Team – Kevin Ten Eyck & Matt Clare
- Mitre National Player of the Week for week 12 of the NPSL – Matt Clare
- NPSL Golden Boot – Matt Clare
The FC Wichita front office sends out a sincere and emphatic THANK YOU to the entire City of Wichita for showing your unrivaled support for this club! From the inception of FC Wichita it has been this club’s philosophy to build it’s foundation serving our community. That one principle has built this club into a championship caliber program.
“Our NPSL debut has been amazing for both players and staff. We faced new challenges everyday which only strengthened our relationship with the community. The support we’ve received is the kind that makes you proud, and inspires you to continue growing and investing in Wichita’s athletes and families.” – FC Wichita Managing Partner, Blake Shumaker
THANK YOU to the City of Wichita Park and Recreation Dept. and the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce for getting behind us and allowing us to represent our beautiful city.
THANK YOU to all of our sponsors and CallCap for believing and investing in us.
THANK YOU to Dani Welniak and Jacob Albracht with KWCH for your fantastic coverage of our journey, as well as KAKE and KSN for helping us get the word out.
THANK YOU to Christian Hardy and the Wichita Eagle for your in-depth reporting and coverage.
THANK YOU to Futbol Wichita Live, Josh Kippenberger and Johnny Freedom, for your colorful and enthusiastic commentary, and to Mike Zarich with MJ Productions for allowing us to be visible across the globe.
THANK YOU to the Soccer Doctor, Dr. Kison Frank, for keeping our guys on the pitch.
THANK YOU to Tony Schock and GS Memorymaker for capturing our season with such stunning photos.
And most importantly, a tremendous THANK YOU goes out to our remarkable fans and the Air Capital Firm. Your enthusiastic support is absolutely phenomenal. It is an honor to wear the FC Wichita badge for you. Thank you for your unconditional love and for being part of our history.
“To the best fans in the league, without you and your support, FC Wichita could not exist. We quickly learned that it isn’t fair to look at the stands at our away games and compare them to what we enjoy at home. It isn’t only us who talk about how great we have it. The players and coaching staff of the teams in our Conference all comment on how great our fans are, and how you all give us such an advantage over the visiting team. The owners, coaching staff, and players want to give all the fans a great big THANK YOU, and want you to know that it is you who we play for.” -Inlow
We’re only getting started!
“To simply sum things up, we’re very happy with the season and ecstatic about the future. We have already begun working on next season to make it bigger and better. I’m excited for the opportunity to move forward with this team, this community, and this city.” – Inlow
“We’ve welcomed players and league officials from around the world who now call Wichita home. We all agree that the opportunity for expansion is inevitable. We plan to pick up on discussions with Wichita leaders and officials to build, expand, and diversify together.” – Shumaker