Sioux Falls City FC looks to set bar higher for second season

Sioux Falls City FC is coming off a successful inaugural season, with plenty of momentum headed into year two.
Published: May. 24, 2023 at 11:37 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - Sioux Falls City FC had what can only be described as a successful inaugural season last year. The team finished fourth in the Northern Conference of the WPSL, winning four games while losing three with one draw. As the team starts it’s second season of competition later this year, the expectations they have for themselves continue to climb.

It’s hard to image a better start for a team of any kind to compete well in your conference, draw the most attendance in the conference, and pique the interest from new players across the region. That’s exactly what Sioux Falls City did their first year in the WPSL.

Now in year two, the preparation for the season is coming together more quickly.

“Last year, it was just talk. It was ideas, like this is what we’d like to do. Now we actually have the video from last year, so we can share that with players and say, ‘Hey, this is kind of the idea,’ and they can see it. That’s really helpful. The culture of the players, they’re very welcoming, we integrate people pretty quickly,” SFCFC Director of Soccer Joe DeMay said.

The core of the team is back as well, trying to see what they can do now that they have a year’s worth of experience under their belt.

“I think with the new groups of girls too, we’ve added a lot of skill and character. I’m excited to see what we can do up top especially,” SFCFC Forward Jozy Bardsley said.

“We obviously had great support. We were able to have a great year, which was honestly surprising. We’re just looking to build off of that, and just go next level, next level and get better,” SFCFC Midfielder Taylor Thomas said.

There’s plenty of new faces as well, with some only joining the team a recently as this week after finishing college finals. Juni Ejere made the trip north and is joining the team from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas.

“The environment that the coaches are fostering is one where everyone is friendly to each other, reaching out. As soon as I got here, everyone has just been like, ‘Hey, are you good? Come hang out, let’s go watch a movie.’ So it’s been really fun,” Ejere said.

With the added experience, comes added expectations for themselves. While the team is taking each game one at a time, competing for the conference title isn’t out of reach, and they’re looking forward to working towards that goal with one of the strongest home crowds in the league behind them.

“We’re just building off of last year, continuing to work hard. Training has been super intense even from last year. We’re just trying to hit the ground running, and come out with a ‘W,’” Bardsley said.

Sioux Falls City will have their work cut out for them to start the year. They’ll be on the road this Friday in St. Paul taking on Salvo SC, ranked 14th in the nation in the latest WPSL Power Rankings. Sioux Falls will open their home schedule on June 2 against Joy Athletic.