Florida Tropics stars to lead Lakeland Tropics in USL Premier Development League opener Saturday

by Brian Ackley

LAKELAND – The Florida Tropics will be well represented on the Bryant Stadium pitch Saturday night when their sister franchise, the Lakeland Tropics, kick off the home portion of its 2017 USL Premier Development League schedule against the defending Southeast Division champion Villages SC.

Kickoff is set for 7:35 p.m. The game will be webcast live on YouTube.

Three of the indoor team's star players are expected to pace the Lakeland attack, including Ricardo Diegues, Victor Parreiras and Victor Rojas.

Diegues was tied for the indoor team 's lead in goals with 17, even though he appeared in just 16 of the team's 20 games. He was also second overall in scoring with 28 points. Parreiras found the back of the net 14 times, tied for third on the team in goals, and Rojas scored eight times, tied for fifth best for the Major Arena Soccer League team that will kick off it's second season this coming November at the Lakeland Center.

“We are very excited to have some of our indoor players help establish a new tradition for our outdoor soccer side,” Majority owner Dr. Panos Iakovidis said. “They are all talented, creative and athletic players whose skills play well regardless of whether they are inside our outside.”

Tickets for Saturday night's home opener are being made available at no charge courtesy of the Bond Clinic by calling the team's office at 863-240-0101. Information about the Lakeland Tropics, including their full schedule and ticket information, is available at www.lakelandtropics.com.