Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Neagle Signs with Seattle, Charleston Battery Day, and More

Today Lamar Neagle signed with Seattle Sounders FC of the MLS. Neagle was on the Charleston Battery for last year's USL-2 Championship. He scored 12 goals in 19 appearances for the Battery last season, which is the most in a season for his career. He was the top scorer for Charleston last year. Neagle was impressive in the Sounder's preseason camps. Neagle scored 1 goal in a match against Real Salt Lake.

"This is where I want to be," said Neagle. "From the start, I knew I needed more games to get better, and now I'm ready to make a difference. The biggest difference is my confidence and feeling comfortable on the field, and confidence comes from playing games and playing well."

This is a huge step for Lamar. Moving from football in Finland, and the USL-2 to the MLS is great forward progress, and a move up after a couple of years is not out of the question, if he does well (He's only 23). He has payed his dues, and he deserves this chance to show what he's got. It will be tough for him to get consistent playing time, with Fredy Montero and Blaise Nkufo playing forward for Seattle, but we'll see what happens. There was no doubt in my mind that he wouldn't make the roster, but I was also hoping to see him in black and yellow this summer.

Berkeley County, South Carolina, has officially named March 5th Charleston Battery Day. This day will be held because of the Battery's commitment to success on the field, as well as in the community. I think this is just a great idea, and good publicity for the Battery.

Also, alongside the Carolina Challenge Cup this coming weekend, there will be the Carolina Challenge Academy Cup. Academy teams of Chicago Fire and DC United will be participating in this tournament, along with the Battery's academy, South Carolina United, and North Meck SC USSF Academy. The tournament will be two round robin tournaments in the U16 and U18 age divisions. They will be played on Saturday at Blackbaud Stadium. The South Carolina United teams will don the Battery's uniforms, strengthening the link between South Carolina youth soccer and the Battery. SC United Executive Director Clark Brisson had this to say about the tournament:

“We are excited about the opportunity to host MLS Academy teams and North Meck in conjunction with the Carolina Challenge Cup. Special thanks to the Charleston Battery for their support and efforts in bringing USSF Academy teams to Charleston. We wish all coaches and teams the best of luck and hope they enjoy visiting Charleston.”

All of the games in this tournament, including the championship match, are free of admission. So come on down to Blackbaud Stadium to check out these young players.


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