Freedom FC fighting for league lead Saturday in Edwards |

Freedom FC fighting for league lead Saturday in Edwards

Local professional soccer club Freedom FCplays the Colorado Springs Blizzard for the league lead, 2 p.m. Saturday in WECMRD's Edwards Fieldhouse. Local soccer legend Caesar Castillo, pictured here, leads the PASL in scoring.
Daily file photo |

If You Go

What: Freedom FC professional arena soccer

When: 2 p.m. Saturday

Where: WECMRD’s Edwards Fieldhouse

Cost: $5

Information: The Freedom FC plays professional arena soccer in the nationwide Premier Arena Soccer League. They host the Colorado Springs Blizzard this Saturday.

To become a team sponsor, call Coach Mike Schneider: 970-390-3973

EDWARDS — It’s good to play for Freedom these days.

Here’s why:

• The local professional indoor soccer team plays a showdown for first place at 2 p.m. Saturday against the Colorado Springs Blizzard, in WECMRD Fieldhouse in Edwards. The Blizzard edged Freedom FC 5-4 on a last second goal earlier this season in Colorado Springs.

• Freedom FC made next week’s nationals in Phoenix. It’s a big deal because it’s the first time the team has qualified since its inception in 2009.

• The Freedom’s Caesar Castillo leads the league in scoring. He had five goals and two assists in their win over the Golden Strikers.

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• On March 25, the Freedom hosts the league’s All Star game. They play in the nationwide Premier Arena Soccer League.

• The Freedom has been invited to move up to the Major Arena Soccer League and full professional status.

So, the best collection of soccer players you know personally keeps getting better.

All hail Caesar

Castillo is as good as you remember. He dominated local and state leagues for years as a kid, and is still considered by many to be among the best players in the state. He played junior college ball at Cerritos College in Los Angeles. He transferred to U.C. Santa Barbara where he played for a year and a half, then finished his bachelors degree at Fort Lewis College in Durango. He played professionally with the Colorado Rapids and the Colorado Springs Switchbacks.

Castillo is a Freedom FC original, joining the team for its inaugural season in 2009 when he was a senior at Eagle Valley High School.

Rene “Goku” Zeyala started playing with the Freedom a few years back, after playing for national youth teams in Honduras before landing in the Vail Valley a few years back.

Yeah, they’re that good

Mike Schneider has been coaching soccer for decades at all sorts of levels, from high school to professional, but says he has never seen a collection of players like this.

This is their first season back after a two-year hiatus.

“I thought we’d need a year or two to get to the nationals, but this team is this good,” Schneider said. “I think we have some of the best players in the state.”

All of the Freedom players are local and almost half have played at the collegiate level. Players and coaches come from the United States, Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, Bulgaria and Chile. Five Freedom members were full scholarship college players.

Players come from Glenwood Springs, the Roaring Fork Valley, as well as the Vail Valley.

Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and

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