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December 6, 2023

Massachusetts Pirates football team’s move to Lowell official, 2024 scheduled released

A photo of a football helmet Photo | Grant Welker A helmet for the Massachusetts Pirates, who announced a move to Lowell in November.

The Massachusetts Pirates, an indoor football team that played in Worcester’s DCU Center for its first five seasons, have made their move to Lowell’s Tsongas Center official and are now selling home game tickets for next season.

The team agreed to a multi-year deal with the arena to host the franchise, which plays in the Nebraska-based Indoor Football League, according to a press release issued by the team in early November. The exact length or terms of the deal were not disclosed. 

"The receptiveness and enthusiasm surrounding our organization relocating to the Tsongas Center and Middlesex County is why we are here today, and we certainly appreciate it,” Jawad Yatim, Pirates founder, co-owner, president and general manager, said in the release.

The Pirates will play eight games in Lowell in the 2024 season, with their first home game scheduled for March 23 against the Jacksonville Sharks. The team will conclude its 2024 home slate against the Quad City Steamwheelers on July 1. 

"On behalf of UMass Lowell, we're excited to welcome indoor football to Tsongas Center, the City of Lowell and the Greater Merrimack Valley Region," Keith Vaske, district general manager of the arena, said in the release. "The facility will be a terrific home to the Pirates with indoor football fans able to get close to the action and enjoy the electrifying atmosphere inside Tsongas Center."

The team announced in October it was leaving Worcester, but had to hold off on announcing its new home until terms of the deal were finalized. The Pirates had a 21-4 home record in their time at the DCU Center.

The Tsongas Center is owned by the University of Massachusetts Lowell and was first opened in 1998. In addition to hosting the Pirates and the school’s hockey and basketball teams, UMass Lowell will host a currently unnamed franchise of the newly established Professional Women’s Hockey League. 

The Tsongas Center has a capacity of 6,500 for sporting events and 7,800 for concerts, according to the arena’s website. The DCU Center has a capacity of 14,800.

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