Charleston Battery

The Charleston Battery are an American professional soccer club based in Charleston, South Carolina and member of the USL Championship. Founded in 1993, the Battery is one of the oldest continuously operating professional soccer clubs in the United States, tied with the Richmond Kickers.

Charleston Battery
Charleston Battery (2020) logo.svg
Full nameCharleston Battery
Nickname(s)Battery, Holy City
Founded1993 (27 years ago) (1993)
StadiumPatriots Point Soccer Complex
Mount Pleasant, South Carolina
Capacity5,000
OwnerRob Salvatore[1]
Head CoachMike Anhaeuser
LeagueUSL Championship
20205th, Eastern Conference
Playoffs: Conference Semifinals
WebsiteClub website
Current season

Charleston is one of the more successful lower division soccer clubs in the United States, having won the USISL Pro League in 1996, the USL A-League in 2003, and the final season of the USL Second Division in 2010.[2] In 2012, the team won the USL Pro Championship, winning its fourth league title in club history. Charleston is also the most successful club in the history of the unofficial Southern Derby competition with nine first-place finishes.

The Battery currently play at Patriots Point Soccer Complex in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina. Previously, the club played its home games at the soccer-specific MUSC Health Stadium in the Daniel Island section of Charleston from 1999 to 2019. The team's colors are black and yellow, with a traditional red scheme for away uniforms. Since 2005, their head coach and general manager has been Mike Anhaeuser.

HistoryEdit

The Battery was formed in 1993 by an ownership group of local soccer enthusiasts led by Tony Bakker, a native of London who had relocated his software company Blackbaud to the Charleston area in 1989. The club hired experienced college coach and University of South Carolina graduate Tim Hankinson to develop the team, and the Battery started as a member of the USISL, which eventually evolved and came to be known as the USL in 1995. The Battery won their first league championship in 1996 under Portuguese manager Nuno Piteira, defeating the Charlotte Eagles 3–2 in the final. In 1997 Charleston became one of the original clubs of the newly branded A-League (later the USL First Division).

In 1999 the Battery moved into what is now known as MUSC Health Stadium, becoming the first non-Major League Soccer professional club in the United States to build its own stadium, and forged a reputation as one of the country's most well-established lower division clubs. The Battery hired veteran English coach Alan Dicks and signed many experienced domestic players such as Paul Conway, Dan Calichman and Eric Wynalda while also bringing in notable foreign signings such as Terry Phelan and Raúl Díaz Arce. In 2001 Dicks was replaced by fellow Englishman Chris Ramsey, who led Charleston to the A-League championship in 2003 with a 3–0 victory in the final over Minnesota Thunder in Charleston. Following Ramsey's departure in 2004, the club promoted longtime player and assistant coach Mike Anhaeuser to be the club's new manager.

In 2008 the Battery reached the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup final for the first time, playing against Major League Soccer team D.C. United at RFK Stadium.[3] In the final the Battery conceded an early goal but bounced back with a quick-fire equalizer through an Ian Fuller goal, assisted by Chris Williams. Later in the half Lazo Alavanja hit the post but at half time the scores were tied at 1–1. At the start of the second half Charleston conceded early again, but in the final seconds of extra time Marco Reda put the ball in the back of the net for Charleston, only to have his goal controversially disallowed as offside. D.C. United would go on to win the match 2–1. Charleston remain the most recent non-MLS club to play in the Open Cup final.

In 2010 Charleston was invited by several other USL clubs to join the breakaway league eventually known as the North American Soccer League, but the Battery chose to remain in the USL system and self-relegate to the USL Second Division, which eventually became the chief USL professional division. In their first third division season in 2010, Charleston led the league standings for the entire year and went undefeated at home. Charleston defeated the Richmond Kickers 2–1 in the final to claim the club's third league championship. Lamar Neagle was named the USL-2 league MVP and lead the league in scoring with 13 league goals.[4] Anhaeuser was named the league's manager of the year, his second time receiving the honor.[4] In 2012 the Battery won their fourth league title in club history, defeating local rivals Wilmington Hammerheads 1–0 in the final. Micheal Azira scored a 74th-minute winner after Jose Cuevas slipped a pass to him on the left side of the penalty area.

In recent years the Battery have had loan affiliations with several Major League Soccer clubs, beginning with a one-year deal to become the USL Pro affiliate of Vancouver Whitecaps FC in 2014.[5] For the 2015 season, the Battery signed a one-year deal to affiliate with the Houston Dynamo.[6] On January 15, 2016, it was announced that the club would be partnering with the Atlanta United FC for the 2016 MLS season prior to Atlanta's entry to MLS in 2017.

In February 2016, it was announced that longtime majority owner Tony Bakker had sold the club to B Sports Entertainment, an investment group led by local tech executives. Club president Andrew Bell and manager Mike Anhaeuser remained in charge of team operations after the ownership transition. In early 2018 it was announced that Bell would be leaving the club to take over operations of an announced USL expansion club in Memphis, Tennessee, ending a two-decade career in the Charleston front office. Bell was replaced by club operations officer Mike Kelleher.

In October 2019, it was announced that B Sports Entertainment had sold the club to Rob Salvatore of HCFC, LLC with a move to Patriots Point Soccer Complex in Mount Pleasant.[7]

Colors and badgeEdit

Charleston's traditional colors are yellow, black and red. In the Battery's first few seasons, the home kit was typically black and white with a red accent. Beginning in 1997 the club began using black with yellow stripes, which has remained in use as the home jersey ever since. The Charleston away kit has typically been a combination of red, white and black, though for the 2017 season the away kit is either the 25 Anniversary black and silver combination, or white and black.

The club badge has been the same throughout its history, other than minor adjustments in color, resolution and the addition of four stars representing each of the team's league championships. It is a classic shield in the club's signature yellow and black stripes, featuring a pair of crossed artillery cannons (alluding to the city's naval history and prominent role in the American Revolution and American Civil War) above a depiction of a soccer ball.

StadiumsEdit

The Battery played their first six seasons in downtown Charleston at Stoney Field, a facility they shared with various college and high school sports teams.

The club moved to MUSC Health Stadium (previously known as Blackbaud Stadium) in the suburban Daniel Island area in 1999. The first privately funded soccer-specific stadium built in the United States, it seats 5,100 people.[8] MUSC Health Stadium is modeled on lower level English soccer grounds and features an on-site pub called The Three Lions behind the west stand. The stadium site also features a training field and club offices.

In 2016, the new ownership built the second-largest video board in the Southeast. MUSC Health Stadium's jumbotron is 3,000 square feet. When comparing the square footage to stadium seats ratio, the video board is the largest in the world.

Additionally, the complex includes sky boxes, a plaza for corporate entertaining, and state-of-the-art media capabilities, making it one of the premier professional soccer venues in the U.S.

Club cultureEdit

The Battery's official supporters' group is The Regiment, who stand in section E1 with other supporters' groups including the American Outlaws-affiliated Queen Anne's Revenge and the Spanish-speaking Charleston Barra Brava.

The Battery competes for the Coffee Pot Cup every time it faces their rival team D.C. United of Major League Soccer, a trophy established by the two sides' supporters and currently held by DC. The clubs have regularly faced each other in friendlies and cup competitions, with the 2008 US Open Cup final remaining the highest profile match between the two clubs to date. Charleston are also longtime league rivals of the Richmond Kickers.

The team's home games are broadcast on ESPN+ and the local MyNetworkTV affiliate with play-by-play from Poppy Miller. For many years the club were covered by Charleston Post & Courier sportswriter Keith Namm, and the publication's current beat writer for the Battery is Andrew Miller.

Players and staffEdit

Current rosterEdit

As of March 5, 2020[9]

Where a player has not declared an international allegiance, nation is determined by place of birth.

No. Position Player Nation
0 Goalkeeper Darian McCauley   United States
1 Goalkeeper Phil Breno   United States
3 Defender Kyle Nelson   United States
4 Defender Rennico Clarke   Jamaica
5 Defender Leland Archer   Trinidad and Tobago
6 Midfielder Robbie Crawford   Scotland
7 Midfielder Nico Rittmeyer   Guatemala
8 Midfielder Romario Piggott   Panama
9 Forward Arthur Bosua   South Africa
10 Forward Zeiko Lewis   Bermuda
11 Forward Nicque Daley   Jamaica
12 Defender Deshawon Nembhard   United States
13 Midfielder Mauro Cichero   Venezuela
14 Defender Jarad van Schaik   United States
15 Defender Temi Adesodun   Nigeria
16 Forward Stavros Zarokostas   Greece
17 Defender Logan Gdula   United States
18 Forward Jesus Ibarra   United States
19 Midfielder Dante Marini   United States
20 Defender A. J. Paterson   Grenada
21 Midfielder Angelo Kelly-Rosales   Honduras
26 Midfielder Kierron Mason   Trinidad and Tobago
28 Goalkeeper Paul Lewis   United States
30 Midfielder James Cox ([A])   United States
33 Goalkeeper Joe Kuzminsky   United States
  1. ^
    USL Academy player

StaffEdit

  •   Mike Kelleher – President
  •   Mike AnhaeuserHead Coach/General Manager
  •   Dusty HudockAssistant Coach/Goalkeeping Coach
  •   Bobby Weisenberger – Head Athletic Trainer

Notable former playersEdit

This list includes those former players who received international caps while playing for the team, made significant contributions to the team in terms of appearances or goals, or who made significant contributions to the sport either before they played for the team, or after they left.

Head coachesEdit

PresidentsEdit

  •   Tony Bakker (1993–1998)
  •   Nigel Cooper (1999–2008)
  •   Andrew Bell (2008–2018)
  •   Mike Kelleher (2018–present)

AchievementsEdit

as co-champions^

RecordEdit

Year-by-yearEdit

This is a partial list of the last five seasons completed by the Battery. For the full season-by-season history, see List of Charleston Battery seasons.

Season League Position Playoffs USOC Continental / Other Average
attendance
Top goalscorer(s)
Div League Pld W L D GF GA GD Pts PPG Conf. Overall Name Goals
2016 3 USL 30 13 8 9 38 33 +5 48 1.60 6th 10th QF R3 DNQ 3,570   Unknown X
2017 2 USL 32 15 8 9 53 33 +20 54 1.69 2nd 7th R1 R4 3,167   Romario Williams 15
2018 USL 34 14 6 14 47 34 +13 56 1.65 4th 9th R1 R4 2,872   Ataulla Guerra 16
2019 USLC 34 11 10 13 44 44 0 46 1.35 9th 19th R1 R4 2,424   Unknown X
2020 USLC 15 9 3 3 26 15 +11 30 2.00 5th 9th QF NH 0   Unknown X

^ 1. Avg. Attendance include statistics from league matches only.
^ 2. Top Goalscorer(s) includes all goals scored in league play, playoffs, U.S. Open Cup, and other competitive matches.

Record vs. International and MLS teamsEdit

Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Record: W:8–D:1–L:13
Carolina Challenge Cup Record: W:5–D:9–L:20
Exhibition Record: W:5–D:2–L:7

Date Competition Location Home Team Result Away Team
April 24, 1993 Exhibition Charleston, South Carolina Charleston Battery 2–0 Constant Spring F.C.
May 5, 1993 Exhibition Charleston, South Carolina Charleston Battery 0–1 FK-RAF, Latvia
April 2, 1994 Exhibition Charleston, South Carolina Charleston Battery 0–0 Fort Lauderdale Strikers
April 24, 1996 Exhibition Charleston, South Carolina Charleston Battery 1–2 a.e.t. U.S.A. men's u-23's
June 17, 1998 Exhibition Charleston, South Carolina Charleston Battery 1–0 Tampa Bay Mutiny
August 4, 1999 1999 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 4–3 a.e.t. D.C. United
September 1, 1999 1999 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Virginia Beach Sportsplex Colorado Rapids 3–0 Charleston Battery
May 1, 2000 Exhibition Charleston, South Carolina Charleston Battery 1–2 Tampa Bay Mutiny
June 14, 2000 2000 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–4 D.C. United
June 27, 2001 2001 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 4–1 Metrostars
July 11, 2001 2001 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Foxboro Stadium New England Revolution 2–1 Charleston Battery
March 30, 2002 Exhibition Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 4 – 1 Dallas Burn
April 4, 2002 Exhibition Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–2 New England Revolution
July 17, 2002 2002 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–1 Colorado Rapids
July 20, 2002 Exhibition Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 2 – 1 Puebla F.C.
March 23, 2003 Exhibition Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–1 D.C. United
March 20, 2004 2004 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–2 D.C. United
March 24, 2004 2004 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–3 Columbus Crew
July 17, 2004 Exhibition Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 2–1 Sunderland A.F.C.
July 20, 2004 2004 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–0 Metrostars
August 25, 2004 2004 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Benedetti–Wehrli Stadium Chicago Fire 1–0 Charleston Battery
March 19, 2005 2005 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–1 Columbus Crew
March 23, 2005 2005 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 2–2 D.C. United
March 25, 2005 2005 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–1 San Jose Earthquakes
March 18, 2006 2006 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–1 Houston Dynamo
March 22, 2006 2006 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–0 New York Red Bulls
March 25, 2006 2006 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–1 D.C. United
August 2, 2006 2006 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 3–5 FC Dallas
March 24, 2007 2007 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–1 New York Red Bulls
March 28, 2007 2007 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–1 Houston Dynamo
March 31, 2007 2007 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–3 Toronto FC
July 10, 2007 2007 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–0 Houston Dynamo
August 7, 2007 2007 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–2 FC Dallas
March 15, 2008 2008 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–1 New York Red Bulls
March 19, 2008 2008 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–2 San Jose Earthquakes
March 22, 2008 2008 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 2–0 Toronto FC
July 1, 2008 2008 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 5–4 Houston Dynamo
July 8, 2008 2008 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Pizza Hut Park FC Dallas 1–3 Charleston Battery
September 3, 2008 2008 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup RFK Stadium D.C. United 2–1 Charleston Battery
March 7, 2009 2009 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–2 Toronto FC
March 11, 2009 2009 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–2 Real Salt Lake
March 14, 2009 2009 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–2 D.C. United
June 30, 2009 2009 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 3–1 Chivas USA
July 7, 2009 2009 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–4 Houston Dynamo
March 13, 2010 2010 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–0 Toronto FC
March 17, 2010 2010 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–3 Real Salt Lake
March 20, 2010 2010 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–2 D.C. United
June 29, 2010 2010 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Toyota Park Chicago Fire 0–0 pk (0–3) Charleston Battery
July 6, 2010 2010 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Columbus Crew Stadium Columbus Crew 3–0 Charleston Battery
July 17, 2010 Exhibition Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–2 Bolton Wanderers
March 5, 2011 2011 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–2 D.C. United
March 9, 2011 2011 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 2–1 Toronto FC
March 12, 2011 2011 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–0 Chicago Fire
July 27, 2011 Exhibition Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–0 Portsmouth F.C.
February 25, 2012 2012 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 2–2 Columbus Crew
February 29, 2012 2012 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–3 D.C. United
May 29, 2012 2012 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–3 New York Red Bulls
February 16, 2013 2013 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 2–3 Vancouver Whitecaps
February 20, 2013 2013 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–2 Chicago Fire
February 23, 2013 2013 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 2–1 Houston Dynamo
May 28, 2013 2013 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–0 San Jose Earthquakes
June 12, 2013 2013 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Rio Tinto Stadium Real Salt Lake 5–2 a.e.t. Charleston Battery
February 22, 2014 2014 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–2 Seattle Sounders FC
February 26, 2014 2014 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–1 D.C. United
March 1, 2014 2014 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–2 Houston Dynamo
February 21, 2015 2015 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–0 Houston Dynamo
February 25, 2015 2015 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–1 Orlando City SC
February 28, 2015 2015 Carolina Challenge Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 0–3 New York City FC
June 17, 2015 2015 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 4–4 pk (7–8) Orlando City SC
July 17, 2015 Exhibition Blackbaud Stadium Charleston Battery 1–2 West Bromwich Albion
June 14, 2017 2017 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Fifth Third Bank Stadium Atlanta United 3–2 Charleston Battery
June 6, 2018 2018 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Fifth Third Bank Stadium Atlanta United 3–0 Charleston Battery
June 13, 2019 2019 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Fifth Third Bank Stadium Charleston Battery 1–3 Atlanta United

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ apmiller@postandcourier.com, Andrew Miller. "Charleston Battery sold to new owner after 3 tumultuous years under former leadership". Post and Courier.
  2. ^ "United Soccer Leagues (USL)". usl2.uslsoccer.com. Archived from the original on July 24, 2012. Retrieved May 2, 2014.
  3. ^ http://www.charleston.net/news/2008/aug/Charleston[permanent dead link] defeated the Richmond Kickers 2–1 to claim the championship, the third in the history of the club. 13/battery_stuffs_sounders50669/
  4. ^ a b "United Soccer Leagues (USL)". usl2.uslsoccer.com. Archived from the original on July 18, 2012. Retrieved May 2, 2014.
  5. ^ "Vancouver Whitecaps announce USL PRO affiliate agreement with Charleston Battery". Major League Soccer. January 23, 2014. Retrieved March 29, 2014.
  6. ^ "Battery, Dynamo sign 2015 deal". Charleston Battery. December 22, 2014. Archived from the original on April 4, 2015. Retrieved January 11, 2015.
  7. ^ Staff, USLChampionship com (October 30, 2019). "Battery Enter Exciting New Era Under HCFC, Announce Relocation". USL Championship.
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on January 15, 2010. Retrieved 2010-05-01.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ "2020 roster". charlestonbattery.com. Retrieved February 6, 2020.

External linksEdit

Preceded by
Long Island Rough Riders
USISL Pro League (USL-2) Winner
1996
Succeeded by
Albuquerque Geckos
Preceded by
Milwaukee Rampage
USL A-League (USL-1) Champions
2003
Succeeded by
Montreal Impact
Preceded by
Orlando City
USL Pro Champions
2012
Succeeded by
Orlando City
Preceded by
Atlanta Silverbacks
Southern Derby Winner
2003
Succeeded by
Atlanta Silverbacks
Preceded by
Atlanta Silverbacks
Southern Derby Winner
Co-winners with Atlanta Silverbacks

2005
Succeeded by
Atlanta Silverbacks