Last updated on October 7th, 2021 at 11:56 am
In December, the Milwaukee Wave will take the field at the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena for the first time in what will be almost three years.
The men’s professional indoor soccer team returns after canceling its 2020-21 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic and concerns over hosting fans at home games. The franchise had been unable to reach an agreement with the Wisconsin Center District to use the Panther Arena, the Wave’s home turf since 2003.
Mike Zimmerman, owner of the Wave and CEO of Franklin-based ROC Ventures, has signed a one-year lease agreement with the Panther Arena for the upcoming 2021-22 season, according to a Tuesday news release.
After winning the Major Arena Soccer League championship in May 2019, the team had been expected to defend its title in 2020, but the regular season was cut short as the world shut down.
“Thanks to a new one-year lease agreement with Panther Arena, we can get back on the turf,” said Zimmerman. “I think our entire organization looks at this season as a chance to defend our championship after an unforeseen interruption.”
The franchise has used the time off to “tune up.” The Wave now has a new home training center at the Midwest Orthopedic Specialty Hospital (MOSH) Performance Center, located at the Rock Sports Complex in Franklin. It also brought on EXOS Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine and MOSH as training and recovery partners.
“The pieces are all coming together,” Zimmerman said, noting the improvements were long in the making.
Plus, the team has kept the core of its championship roster intact, including Ian Bennett, Marcio Leite, Luan Olivera, Andre Hayne, Josh Lemos, Daniel Chamale, Angel Curiel, and Stuart Grable.
The Wave’s home opener is set for Saturday, Dec. 18 at 6:05 p.m. against the Baltimore Blast. Tickets for the upcoming season are available through the team’s website.