WINDSOR, Colo. — Having already secured the Ice & Fire Cup for a second-straight season, Northern Colorado Hailstorm FC can clinch their first-ever USL League One playoff berth Saturday at Central Valley Fuego FC.
A single win from their last six matches is all Hailstorm need to qualify for the playoffs after missing out last year on the last day of the season. They can also clinch a playoff berth before even taking the field Saturday if Greenville Triumph beats One Knoxville SC earlier in the day.
“I think it’s massive for the club,” Hailstorm head coach Éamon Zayed said. “The playoffs are within reach now and hopefully we can grasp it.”
Standing between Hailstorm and the playoffs is Fuego, a club on its third head coach of the season in Edison Gonzalez and that is winless in its last nine matches. They have also failed to keep a clean sheet since the opening day of the season.
“You can’t underestimate any team,” Hailstorm midfielder Nortei Nortey said. “Fuego have some good individual players, maybe it just hasn’t been working for them collectively.
Hailstorm and Fuego kick off at 8:30 p.m. Mountain time Saturday in Fresno, Calif. The match can be watched live on ESPN+.
The home of Northern Colorado Hailstorm FC, 118-acre Future Legends Complex, will feature 6,500-seat TicketSmarter Stadium, 2,500-seat Future Legends Field, multiple baseball diamonds, multi-purpose fields, an indoor sports arena, lodging, and retail; and will host guests for major sports leagues, tournaments, events and more.
More information is available at HailstormFC.com and FutureLegendsComplex.com.