PO soccer sells discount tickets to increase fan base

Another native resident has joined the Port Orchard Football Club as its supporter liaison, acting as the bridge between club management and the team’s fan base.

Aaron Banks has lived in Port Orchard all of his life and has watched the small city continue to grow over the past decade. He said that things have been promising, but the addition of a soccer team to call its own is special.

“I’m starting to see a real push of some real authentic culture downtown. I can see a lot more engagement from my neighbors in caring about what happens to the town, and I’ve got high hopes for what’s in store for Port Orchard, especially with having our own soccer team now,” he said.

Banks is an avid supporter of soccer in the Northwest. He is a member of the West Sound Armada, one of several supporter groups for the Seattle Sounders. He recalled how fun it has been ferrying with other club members, marching at Pioneer Square and supporting their team. It’s a fan base that Banks said could take a major liking to the newest Cascadia Premier League team in Port Orchard.

“I know that there’s a healthy soccer culture here in Kitsap County,” he said. “Imagine some of those West Sound Armada peeps hopping on the foot ferry, coming over to Port Orchard and hiking up the hill to Kitsap Bank Stadium and watching our boys up there.”

In his first few days, Banks has helped advertise a way for Port Orchard fans to get involved in the POFC’s founding as a part of its early season ticket plan. POFC introduced the Founders Circle Jan. 30 as a way to help fund the new team.

“We are opening our arms and putting our hearts out there for the people we will be playing for,” club coordinator David Falk says in a news release, “making our first season something we can celebrate together and build on.”

The initial sale is set to run through Feb. 23 in honor of 2023 being the club’s founding year. Season tickets will be $23 during that time. Fans will also have the option of having their name displayed alongside Falk, head coach Patrick Leonard and general manager Sam Ironside as founding members of the POFC.

Banks, knowing how important groups like the Armada are to the Sounders, said it would be important to build that same fan base and supporter group for the POFC. “When we have people cheering in the stands for us, it is a game changer,” he said, “and I can imagine our boys being pretty proud to have a little supporters section cheering them on in the first game.”

Prices following the sale will jump to $40 for adults and $25 for youth ages 6 and up. Youth ages 5 and under will be free.

The season is expected to include five home matches, along with the possibility of cup and friendly matches as well. POFC intends to play its home matches at Kitsap Bank Stadium at South Kitsap High School. Match times are 3 p.m. on Sundays.