Tropics will play four times in February; will host San Diego, Tacoma and Ontario in mini-tournament

by Brian Ackley

LAKELAND, Fla. –  The Florida Tropics will play four games in February, which includes playing host to an “indoor soccer palooza” Feb. 18-21 which will see four teams play a total of six games at the RP Funding Center in Lakeland.

Florida will open the February portion of its schedule with a Friday, Feb. 12 road date in Dallas against the Sidekicks, and then return to Lakeland for its three-games-in-four-days stretch beginning with a 3:05 p.m. start Thursday, Feb. 18 against the Tacoma Stars. That will be followed by a Friday, Feb. 19,  start at 7:05 p.m. against the San Diego Sockers and wrap up with a Sunday, Feb. 21 start against the Ontario Fury at 4:05 p.m.

It will be the first time ever that Tacoma and Ontario will visit Florida, and the first time ever the Tropics and Fury will meet in the regular season. Other games will include San Diego against Ontario at 7:05 p.m. on Feb. 18, Tacoma against Ontario at 3:05 p.m. Friday and San Diego against Tacoma at 12 noon on Feb. 21.

The MASL’s west coast teams are not anticipating being able to have home dates this spring because of Coronavirus restrictions in their respective areas, and will play all their games on the road or at neutral sites like Lakeland. All told, the MASL will stage a total of 16 games in February with seven teams, with additional teams in the northeast expected to come online in March. 

At present, 10 teams have committed to playing in the 2021 season, although that could still change depending on local restrictions related to the pandemic. Four teams are currently playing in January, with San Diego, Tacoma and Ontario joining the mix in February. Teams will play between 12 and 24 games, with playoff seeding determined by overall winning percentage. 

The league is announcing schedules only a month at a time because of the pandemic restrictions, but the final games of the regular season will be played by April 18.

The Tropics will conclude a five-game season-opening home stand Saturday when they host the Dallas Sidekicks. The game time has been moved to a 6:05 p.m. start, and fans will be able to watch a live free broadcast of the match on Facebook at Florida will end January with games in St. Louis on Jan. 29 and 31.

Single game tickets are available through the team’s Facebook page (click on the event link), or by calling 863-240-0101. Tickets will also be available gameday at the RP Funding Center box office. The team and arena have devised a socially distanced seating plan that can accommodate approximately 1,500 fans per game. Facial coverings will be required for those in attendance.