Goalkeeper Brett Petricek -- first ever to record Tropics shutout -- returns for 2021-22 season

by Brian Ackley

LAKELAND, Fla. -- The first goalkeeper in Florida Tropics history to post the rare indoor soccer shutout will be back with the team on a one-year deal for the 2021-22 Major Arena Soccer League Season.

Brett Petricek, who posts a career best 3.92 goals against average in eight games for Florida in the 2019-20 season, also set a career best in saves percentage that season at .726 in splitting time with Hugo Silva, who recently inked a five-year deal to remain with the Tropics. Per league and team policy, no further details of the contract will be released. 

Petricek started his MASL season with the Cedar Rapids Rampage in 2016-17, winning 12 of his 20 starts that season. After a second season with the Rampage, he played one year with the Kansas City Comets before coming to Florida. He signed last year with the St. Louis Ambush where he appeared in four games. 

In all, Petricek has appeared in 52 MASL games, with 28 wins, a career goals against average of 5.97 and saves percentage of .686. On January 19, 2019, he recorded the franchise’s first ever shutout in a 7-0 win over the Dallas Sidekicks in Dallas, where he made seven saves on 10 shots. 

“It was really important to get Brett back on our roster. This league is proving that having two top flight goaltenders is becoming a must, and we know from a couple of years ago, that both Brett and Hugo were at their best when they pushed each other to career-years,” Coach Clay Roberts said. “With a strong defensive core intact, and now having both goalkeepers on board, we’re expecting to be one of the best defensive teams in the league.”

The Tropics will kick off their sixth season in the Major Arena Soccer League later this fall at the RP Funding Center in Lakeland, playing a 24-game schedule. The Tropics were the 2019-20 Eastern Conference champions with an 18-3 record. The season and playoffs were cancelled in March that season because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Last year, the Tropics won the regular season title with a 10-3 mark, but fell in the first-round of the MASL playoffs to the eventual champion San Diego Sockers in games played on a neutral field in Kansas City. 

The league expects to announce its full schedule in the coming weeks, at which time the Tropics will also release information on tickets including a new fan-friendly policy that will allow thousands of local soccer fans to attend MASL games over the winter. 

For more information, visit fltropics.com, or any of the team's social media sites.