TULSA - Sports fans, listen up.
Tulsa is adding another sports team to the roster.
The Tulsa Athletics will kick-off their inaugural season on May 18, inside the old Drillers Stadium. "This is my gift to Tulsa," said Athletics co-owner, Sonny Dalesandro.
The Athletics will be an amateur team, competing in the National Premier Soccer League. 61 amateur and professional teams make up the league. The Athletics first game will be against the Liverpool Warriors, from Dallas.
Dalesandro and co-owner Dr. Tommy Kern hope the Athletics generate so much public interest, that Major League Soccer will have no choice but to establish a team in Tulsa. "That's our goal," Dalesandro said. "We can only do so much as an ownership group, but we do believe in Tulsa and we believe that Tulsans have supported a franchise of this size in the past, so absolutely, if the support is there, we'll bring an MLS team here."
The team is working feverishly to revamp Drillers Stadium. The old ballpark has sat empty since 2011, when a youth baseball league called it home. New grass and a freshly painted outfield fence will greet fans on opening day.
Officials with Expo Square are thrilled a tenant will call the stadium home. "I think it's a great fit with Expo Square," said Amanda Blair, the Executive Manager for Sales and Marketing for Expo Square. "I think it's a great family fit with this community and I look forward to having Tulsans come out and support this wonderful opportunity."
A Tulsa Athletics fan group has already been formed. Several fans were on hand for the official announcement of the team's arrival. "A lot of people don't know it, but Tulsa is a soccer town," said fan, Jon Ide.
The Tulsa Roughnecks were the last soccer team to call Tulsa home. They played their last game, inside Drillers Stadium, on July 13, 1985.
For more information on the Athletics' game times and ticket prices, click here .
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