by Lisa Sillaway


The final regular season home game of the 40th anniversary season is at 7 p.m., Sunday, February 23. The game brings Falls Town to Hartman Arena for a Sunday match. The game follows two days of celebration that includes the premiere of the documentary "God Save the Wings" along with the Hall of Fame ceremony and dinner. 

"I already have my VIP tickets for the 'God Save the Wings' premiere.  I have encouraged as many of our players to go as possible," said Coach Roger Downing.

And those fans who buy their tickets to the Sunday evening game, well they get a little bonus. Hall of Fame inductees Kevin Kewley, Chico Borja, Kim Roentved, Norman Piper, and Terry Nicholl are expected to join legendary coach Roy Turner to greet fans and watch the match.

Having the former Wings around isn't just fun - Coach Downing thinks it will be valuable and said he hopes the current Wings can have a bit of time with the veterans. 

"All the guys will enjoy stories from the vets I’m sure, that’s what I’m looking forward to the most.  Any chance you get to hear an old vet tell a war story, you should listen.  That goes for every aspect of life," said Downing. 

Kevin Ten Eyck is certainly looking forward to meeting up with some of his childhood idols.

“We had season tickets growing up,” said Ten Eyck. “I remember as a kid, my parents telling me that I reminded them of Kim Roentved.”

Being compared to famous defender, Roentved, and his love of the Wings and all things soccer led Ten Eyck to a successful high school and collegiate career. After college and before returning to coach at his alma mater, Friends University, Ten Eyck had the opportunity to play with his favorite team for two seasons, the Wichita Wings. During his time with the Wings, he earned placement on the 2011-12 MISL All- Rookie team. 

And now he's back in orange. And gets to play in front of one of his heroes on Sunday, Kim Roentved. 

And Roentved is looking forward to watching - it's the first Wings game he'll have caught during this 40th anniversary season. 

"The fan base that soccer has in Wichita - it still blows my mind because I was there from 1980 until what? 2000? So, it's 20-plus years. And to see how the community just continues to grow? Roy (Turner, former Wings coach), Blake and the other owners have given Wichita a fantastic 40-year ride," said Roentved, former Wing, who remains a popular figure in Wichita soccer decades after his heyday as a defender for the team.

Roentved plans to be in Wichita all weekend for the premiere of the documentary "God Save the Wings" on February 22 and the game on February 23 - and hopes there might be time for a round of golf with his former teammates.

For the current men in orange, there might not be time for too much socializing. They, after all, have a game to win.

"There will be a ton of buzz and pressure to perform on the boys next weekend with all of the hall of famers in town.  We will put on a good show and be ready for Falls Town," said Downing.

Downing added that the team needs that same energy and fan participation to help them defeat Falls Town. 

"The Demize were a good team.  They were undefeated and are used to winning, obviously.  We knew they would be a tough challenge," said Downing. "The crowd was great, especially for an exhibition game.  We love every crowd we have, but the energy was on a different level."

Tickets still remain for the Falls Town match and are available at Hartman Arena in Park City and via Ticketmaster.