Dave Shufelt, a local Kalamazoo Area entrepreneur and soccer supporter is assuming ownership of the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) franchise from founder Mike Garrett. Details on the transaction were not released, but both men are excited about working together to prepare for the upcoming 2019 season.
“I am very pleased to announce that Dave is coming on board”, said Garrett. “He has been a supporter of the team from day one, has a passion for the game and this community – I really feel like he is the perfect fit to take the team forward at this point.” Garrett went on to say, “This has been a labor of love for my wife Tina and I, but our future direction is outside the area and having local ownership like Dave is key.” Full ownership of the team is expected to transfer to Shufelt in the near future.
Shufelt also expressed his enthusiasm on becoming an owner of Kalamazoo FC, “I am looking forward to all aspects of this and building on the great start the team has had,” he said. “I was on the team advisory board that Mike had, know all the people involved and look forward to helping the team become a bigger part of the community.” Both Garrett and Shufelt will represent the franchise at the Annual NPSL Ownership Meetings in Minneapolis December 7, 8 & 9.
Kalamazoo FC will be entering their fourth season in the NPSL. The team competes in the Midwest Division and in 2018 played home and away matches against divisional opponents Detroit City FC, Milwaukee Torrent, FC Columbus, Indiana FC, Grand Rapids FC and AFC Ann Arbor. Home games have been played at Mayor’s River Front Park and the team coaching staff this past season was led by Head Coach Brian Clements. Clements was assisted by Todd Wells and Jake Puente.
Preparations for the 2019 season are underway already. The team currently is offering youth and high school training opportunities at SoccerZone this indoor season and expects to begin announcing coaching staff & player signings in early December.
Dave and his wife Melissa have lived in the Kalamazoo area most of their lives and have raised 3 boys – David, Alec and Jacob. All three have played soccer locally and graduated from Portage Northern. Dave has coached club soccer for 13 years mostly at the U19 level and has put together several teams that have consistently won league championships at the MSPSP Premier 1 level. He, also, has been the JV coach and varsity assistant for both the boys and girls at Portage Northern for the last five years. He owns several businesses, including Bronco Apartments, which has been a huge supporter of KZFC from the beginning.