Illinois State Line Falcons Make the Jump to MLIS

The Illinois State Line Falcons turned an at large bid in the US Open Arena Soccer Championship into a trip to the final, and now this Cinderella story is turning pro. The Falcons today announced that they are joining Major League Indoor Soccer for the upcoming 2022-23 season, bringing professional indoor soccer back to the Rockford, Illinois area. The league previously announced their inclusion under the placeholder name of "Northern Illinois" among the first five teams reported on August 18. Their official introduction brings the running total of 2022-23 MLIS teams to nine.

The Falcons are owned by the SUFC Falcons and the State Line Complex in Love's Park, the home venue of the Falcons.

What seems like a meteoric rise has actually been years in the making. "I remember we started as a group of teenage friends, and I would sponsor us and buy us shirts and gear so we could go and play against adults, since we didn't really have many opportunities growing up," said team owner Jose Salas, Jr. "I used to call us Dark Hawks, but then I read somewhere, whether this is true or not, that a falcon is a trained hawk. It served a purpose as a messenger or as a predator. We didn't have much training, so we trained and became Salas United FC Falcons in 2010. We started as an amateur adult team competing in local leagues in the Elgin area. We then became a youth club to bring in kids from the community that didn't have many opportunities growing up. I've always had respect for the Chicago Mustangs, and it was in 2014 when I said I'd like to compete against them in an arena. In the eight years since then, I met my partners, presented my ideas and learned that we all had a similar vision. Years later, we teamed up with State Line Complex. Combined with SUFC Falcons, State Line Falcons was born." 

And now the Falcons are looking to raise the bar again. "We're hungry for growth," said Salas, Jr. "We are looking for the opportunity to improve as a new Indoor team. We are also looking for that challenge of measuring and comparing what we have to offer, and what we can still offer inside the arena, and as an organization."