Turlock’s sole professional sports team, the Turlock Express, surprised the Professional Arena Soccer League last season, finishing third in the Western Division and earning a playoff berth in their first year of existence.
Last season’s 10-6 finish was a huge success for the smallest market in the PASL, but according to Head Coach Art Pulido, it was only the beginning of what he hopes will become a Turlock mainstay.
“I think we’ll be able to improve on our record and make playoffs again,” Pulido said. “But our ultimate goal is to qualify for the national tournament in San Diego. I think we can do it.”
After their first round loss to the Tijuana Revolucion in the playoffs, Turlock took their talent outdoors where they qualified for both the Open Cup and US Open Tournaments. Turlock faced the Fresno Fuego in the first round of the US Open here in Turlock and was met with nearly 1,000 fans eager to cheer on their home team.
“We found out that people will support a team like the Express in Turlock,” Pulido said.
The Express are currently competing in the National Alianza Tournament in Fremont as they continue to hone their skills and prepare for the new season in November. The Express’ roster currently boasts an array of local players from Turlock, Denair, and Patterson, many of whom have played for Turlock High, Pitman High, and California State University, Stanislaus.
Still, even with all the talent that brought them success last year, the Express will be holding tryouts on Sept. 10 for anyone interested in becoming a pro.