Semi-pro soccer league expands into East Idaho

Ramon Palacios, left, is president of the new Lobos semi-pro soccer team, which is based in Idaho Falls. His cousin, Hector Palacios, is the president of the Boise Cutthroats semi-pro team in Boise.  Photo by Paul Dickey

Ramon Palacios, left, is president of the new Lobos semi-pro soccer team, which is based in Idaho Falls. His cousin, Hector Palacios, is the president of the Boise Cutthroats semi-pro team in Boise.
Photo by Paul Dickey

By Stephanie Bachman, For the Journal

Three seasons ago, the Boise Cutthroats semi-pro soccer team didn’t exist.

They hadn’t yet formed as a team with players not just from Idaho, but Colorado, Montana, Washington, and California. They hadn’t yet traveled 12 to 14 hours to play a game. And they hadn’t yet gone on to nationals not once, but twice to showcase their skills.

Now as the Cutthroats FC, or football club, approach their third season with the same talent and desire to succeed, their president has brought another team to Idaho.

“There’s a lot of soccer love here in Eastern Idaho,” said Hector Palacios, president of the Boise Cutthroats soccer team.

To build an outlet for that soccer love, Hector and his cousin, Ramon Palacios, have formed the Idaho Lobos, a semi-pro team that will compete in the United Premier Soccer League. Ramon has taken the position as president of the Idaho Lobos.

In March, they assembled a roster of 18 players from areas such as Jackson Hole, Rexburg, Idaho Falls, Blackfoot, and Pocatello. The team, which is based in Idaho Falls, will compete predominantly in Utah and Idaho in the league’s Mountain Conference, which hosts six teams total.

One of the driving forces in creating the semi-pro Lobos team was to provide talented players who did not go to college with an opportunity to apply their soccer talents to a different venue.

Everyone will have the chance to play on a higher level than they are used to, according to Ramon.

“I’m from here, and I know there’s a lot of talent here,” Hector said. “We want high school players that are good enough to play to still be able to play the game they love.”

But issues that Hector and Ramon still face include gaining more sponsorships to help cover the costs of travel and equipment, and finding a sponsor to represent the team.

Hector said they hope to have a team in which players don’t have to pay for travel and equipment.

“This season is crucial for Idaho Lobos FC to see if it will be able to function here,” Hector said.