|Just one week left as the Hoppers prepare for their second EPLWA season|
The Hoppers played their final tune-up Friday evening against a local men's team, capping their final week of preseason activity that included four matches against a variety of amateur and collegiate sides from eastern Washington to Portland.
One change in the roster includes the departure of former captain Al Valencia. The club promoted vice captain Dennis Stevenson to the position and named defender Daniel Hernandez the new vice captain.
|New leadership role for Daniel Hernandez|
The Hoppers open the campaign at home Sunday against the Vancouver Victory at Marquette Stadium. Then, after a trip to Bellingham, they return home to a big day for Yakima soccer as they play host to a doubleheader Saturday, May 9. Prior to their contest against South Sound FC, the club will host a women's soccer friendly between Central Washington University and the Seattle Sounders Women, who are preparing for their USL W-League campaign.
"In addition, having it be a high quality women's competition is important to us as well. We'd love to have a Yakima United Ladies team someday and events like this have the potential to really invest in that future potential."
|Sozo Sports, Yakima United continue partnership|
Though there is excitement for getting the season under way, the long-term future for the sport in Yakima also is looking quite bright. Two weeks ago the Yakima City Council approved a resolution for a new multi-million dollar sports complex by a unanimous vote.
The $12 million project, with a third of the capital coming from Yakima public funding via a bond, will be primarily funded by Sozo Sports of Central Washington, a local 501c3 non-profit organization focused on building a sports complex with high caliber multi-use grass and synthetic turf fields indoor and outdoor use. The complex would feature an indoor facility and 19 soccer fields with the potential for the inclusion of rugby, roller derby and ice rink activities.
"We're unbelievably excited about the approval of the Sozo Complex," said Joshua Vega. "Sozo has been nothing but supportive of Yakima United and we jumped on board with them over a year ago. They're a great partner to have. And while Marquette has been home for high level men's soccer in our area, we're very excited that Sozo will be the future home of Yakima United FC.
## EPLWA on INWsoccernews ##