Major Indoor Soccer League (2008–2014)

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Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL)
CountryUnited States
Last championsMissouri Comets
Most championshipsMilwaukee Wave (2)
Baltimore Blast (2)

The Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL), originally known as the National Indoor Soccer League, was a professional indoor soccer league which began play in 2008.[1][2] It was the third league to be known as the Major Indoor Soccer League after the MISL I and MISL II. The MISL name is arguably the most recognizable name in indoor soccer due to its history dating back to 1978.[3] The league name and assets are currently owned by the United Soccer Leagues. The departure of six teams which joined the Professional Arena Soccer League (now the Major Arena Soccer League) after the 2013–14 season effectively ended the MISL.


Launch as NISL[edit]

The NISL was one of three leagues that organized in late 2008 after the demise of the second MISL; the other two being the PASL-Pro (an offshoot of the Premier Arena Soccer League) and the Xtreme Soccer League. The NISL and the XSL were more closely related, with both leagues first announcing four former MISL teams respectively and using the same game rules as the MISL.

Originally, five teams had been announced to play in the inaugural season; four who were in the previous MISL (Baltimore, Monterrey, Orlando Sharks, and Philadelphia) and one formerly in the American Indoor Soccer League (Rockford).[4] However, the Orlando Sharks were forced to go inactive because of scheduling conflicts with Amway Arena. Later, a second former AISL franchise, the Massachusetts Twisters, were brought in to take the place of the Sharks.

In July 2009, the XSL announced they were going on a one-year hiatus due to a lack of monetary backing. The NISL attempted to attract the former MISL teams from the folded XSL to join for the 2009–10 season, and succeeded in acquiring the Milwaukee Wave as a result. The other XSL franchises, minus the Chicago Storm, folded along with the XSL. Shortly after the Wave joined the NISL, the Massachusetts Twisters folded, leaving the 2009–10 season with only five teams again.

Shortly before the league launched its 2009–10 season, the opportunity arose to purchase the rights to the "Major Indoor Soccer League" name; the league successfully acquired the rights and immediately rebranded itself as the newest MISL.[5]

The MISL expanded into Missouri (Kansas City area) and Omaha starting with the 2010–11 season.

Merger with I-League[edit]

For the 2010–11 season, the league consisted of only five teams, with the Rockford Rampage and Monterrey La Raza no longer active league members.[6] On October 15, 2010, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported the exodus of the Philadelphia KiXX and the addition of a Chicago franchise.[7]

Logo for proposed USL I-League

In October 2010, the United Soccer Leagues (USL), which also oversees the men's USL Pro and USL Premier Development Leagues proposed a new league which was to begin play in the fall of 2011, the 'USL I-League.[8] However, in May 2011, the USL, struggling to sign teams for the new league, agreed instead to take over operation of the MISL.[9] Three teams from the proposed league were added: the Norfolk SharX, Rochester Lancers and Syracuse Silver Knights.

In June 2012, the MISL announced that a new Chicago franchise was awarded to Armando Gamboa and Dave Mokry for the 2012–13 season. The club was subsequently named the Chicago Soul, with the club making its home at the Sears Centre.[10] Meanwhile, the Norfolk SharX announced that the team would cease operations effective immediately because of financial difficulties.

Final season[edit]

A new incarnation of the St. Louis Ambush were announced as an expansion team in June 2013. This was St. Louis' first professional indoor soccer team since the St. Louis Steamers folded in 2006.[11][12]

One day after the 2013–14 MISL Championship game, USL President Tim Holt released a video stating that the USL was reevaluating the MISL to create a more "sustainable" league that features the highest level of professional indoor soccer. He noted that the process would take "more than a few months" and that the possibility of not having a 2014–15 playing season existed.[3][13][14]

In the following months, six of the seven teams from the final MISL season joined the Professional Arena Soccer League, which was renamed the Major Arena Soccer League. This was the effective end of MISL III.


Name Years
David Grimaldi 2008–2011
Chris Economides 2011–2014


Team City/Area Arena Founded 1st Season Last Season Status
Baltimore Blast Baltimore Baltimore Arena 1992 2008 2014 Departed in 2014 for MASL[3][13]
Chicago Riot Chicago Odeum Expo Center 2010 2010 2011 Folded in 2011
Chicago Soul Hoffman Estates, Illinois (Chicago area) Sears Centre 2012 2012 2013 Folded in 2013
Massachusetts Twisters West Springfield, Massachusetts The Big E Coliseum 2003 2008 2009 Folded in 2009
Milwaukee Wave Milwaukee U.S. Cellular Arena 1984 2009 2014 Departed in 2014 for MASL
Missouri Comets Independence, Missouri (Kansas City area) Silverstein Eye Centers Arena 2010 2010 2014 Departed in 2014 for MASL[3][13]
Monterrey La Raza[6] Monterrey, Nuevo León Arena Monterrey 2007 2008 2010 Folded in 2010
Norfolk SharX[15] Norfolk, Virginia Norfolk Scope 2010 2011 2012 Folded in 2012
Omaha Vipers Omaha, Nebraska Omaha Civic Auditorium 2010 2010 2011 Departed in 2011 for PASL; folded before season began[16]
Orlando Sharks[17] Orlando, Florida Amway Arena 2007 2008 2008 Folded in 2008
Pennsylvania Roar[18] Reading, Pennsylvania Santander Arena 2013 2013 2014 Folded in 2014
Philadelphia KiXX[7] Philadelphia Liacouras Center 1995 2008 2010 Folded in 2010
Rochester Lancers Rochester, New York Blue Cross Arena 2010 2010 2014 Departed in 2014 for MASL[3][13]
Rockford Rampage[6] Rockford, Illinois Rockford MetroCentre 2005 2008 2010 Folded in 2010
St. Louis Ambush St. Charles, Missouri (St. Louis area) Family Arena 2013 2013 2014 Departed in 2014 for MASL[3][13]
Syracuse Silver Knights Syracuse, New York War Memorial at Oncenter 2010 2010 2014 Departed in 2014 for MASL[3][13]
Wichita Wings Park City, Kansas (Wichita area) Hartman Arena 2011 2011 2013 Folded in 2013

† Never played an NISL/MISL game


Season Date(s) Champion Series Runner-up Score(s) Host Playoffs MVP
2008–09 April 11, 2009 Baltimore Blast 1–0 Rockford Rampage 13–10 Baltimore Sagu
2009–10 April 4, 2010 Monterrey La Raza 1–0 Milwaukee Wave 12–6 Milwaukee Carlos Farias
2010–11 March 25, 2011 Milwaukee Wave 1–0 Baltimore Blast 16–7 Baltimore Marcel Feenstra
2011–12 March 16, 2012;
March 18, 2012
Milwaukee Wave 2–0 Baltimore Blast 14–2, 12–10 (OT) Baltimore/Milwaukee Marcio Leite
2012–13 March 14, 2013;
March 16, 2013
Baltimore Blast 2–0 Missouri Comets 21–12, 8–6 Missouri/Baltimore William Vanzela
2013–14 March 14, 2014;
March 16, 2014
Missouri Comets 2–1 Baltimore Blast 15–8, 4–19, 6–4 Missouri/Baltimore Brian Harris

Average attendance[edit]

Year Games Total Average Playoffs Games Total Average
2008–09 41 170,696 4,163 2009 3# 16,311 5,437
2009–10 50 188,005 3,760 2010 3 14,415 4,805
2010–11 50 199,123 3,982 2011 3# 17,219 5,740
2011–12 84 336,478 4,005 2012 6 30,820 5,136
2012–13 91 377,027 4,143 2013 6# 30,698 6,140
2013–14 70 326,123 4,658 2014 6# 27,794 4,633
Seasons Games Total Average Seasons Games Total Average
6 386 1,597,452 4,138 6 26 137,257 5,280

# A third "mini-game" had to decide the winner after one or more series were tied at 1 game a piece.


  1. ^ "Orlando Sharks join new indoor soccer league, will play 18-game schedule". Orlando Business Journal. Orlando, Florida. September 10, 2008. Retrieved October 1, 2008.
  2. ^ Baker, Kent (September 10, 2008). "Blast joins downsized new league". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved October 1, 2008.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Holt, Tim (March 17, 2014). "MISL Statement". MISL (via YouTube). Archived from the original on December 15, 2021. Retrieved March 23, 2014.
  4. ^ Welsh, Sean (September 10, 2008). "A new league Blasts off: National Indoor Soccer League to house Blast, 4 others". The Baltimore Examiner. Archived from the original on September 11, 2008. Retrieved October 1, 2008.
  5. ^ "The new face of indoor soccer". November 2, 2009. Retrieved November 4, 2009.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ a b c "About the MISL". MISL. Archived from the original on February 5, 2012. Retrieved October 6, 2010.
  7. ^ a b Walker, Don (October 15, 2010). "Changes ahead for Wave, MISL". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved October 15, 2010.
  8. ^ "USL Moves Indoors With I-League" (Press release). United Soccer Leagues. July 21, 2010. Archived from the original on July 10, 2012. Retrieved March 23, 2014.
  9. ^ "USL Enters Into Agreement with MISL" (Press release). United Soccer Leagues. May 16, 2011. Archived from the original on November 7, 2014. Retrieved March 23, 2014.
  10. ^ "Chicago Franchise Set For 2012-13". June 22, 2012. Archived from the original on June 24, 2012. Retrieved June 24, 2012.
  11. ^ "Indoor soccer to return to Family Arena in St. Charles". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. June 12, 2013. Retrieved June 14, 2013.
  12. ^ "St. Louis Ambush Join MISL". June 14, 2013. Archived from the original on June 19, 2013. Retrieved June 14, 2013.
  13. ^ a b c d e f Kramer, Lindsay (March 17, 2014). "Syracuse Silver Knights soccer team part of group exploring possible bolt from the MISL". The Post-Standard. Syracuse, New York. Retrieved March 23, 2014.
  14. ^ "Milwaukee Wave Moves Forward On Several Fronts". Milwaukee Wave. March 28, 2014. Archived from the original on April 1, 2014. Retrieved March 29, 2014.
  15. ^ "Economic Hardship Shuts Down Norfolk SharX Pro Soccer Team". NorfolkSharX. June 25, 2012. Retrieved June 25, 2012.
  16. ^ Burbach, Christopher (October 11, 2011). "Vipers can't get lease on Civic, won't play the 2011-12 season". Omaha World-Herald. Retrieved November 20, 2012.
  17. ^ Ruiz, Stephen (October 23, 2008). "Orlando's indoor soccer team will skip this season, focus on returning in 2009". Orlando Sentinel. Orlando, Florida. Retrieved October 31, 2008.
  18. ^ "Roar Name Puls Head Coach". MISL. August 5, 2013. Archived from the original on August 8, 2013. Retrieved August 5, 2013.

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