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Thursday, February 11, 2010

RailHawks to open 2010 season with friendly versus New England Revolution

Posted by on Thu, Feb 11, 2010 at 2:18 PM

click to enlarge The RailHawks' Aaron King fights for possession in last year's game versus New England.
  • The RailHawks' Aaron King fights for possession in last year's game versus New England.

For the second year in a row, the Carolina RailHawks will open its season with a friendly versus the MLS New England Revolution at WakeMed Soccer Park. Next month's game will be played on Saturday, March 20, at 7 p.m.

Last year's contest was played in the middle of a winter monsoon but got the season off to a propitious start for the RailHawks. The 1-0 victory came courtesy of a 16th-minute goal from Mark Schulte, and the victory was saved in the second half on a sensational Caleb Patterson-Sewell open-field stop.

The press release notes several local connections to the game:

In coming back to the Triangle in 2010, the Revolution will be bringing several players with ties to the area and the RailHawks. Defender Darrius Barnes is a Southeast Raleigh High alum, played at Duke and played for the RailHawks' PDL team for two summers. Midfielder Michael Videira played alongside Barnes at Duke, as well as the RailHawks' U-23s. And forward Zack Schilawski, the Revs' first-round pick in last month's MLS SuperDraft, is a Cary High alum and also played for the RailHawks' PDL squad for two summers.

Tickets are on sale now. Visit www.carolinarailhawks.com for more information. Full press release after the jump.

RailHawks open 2010 campagin against MLS' Revolution

Teams to meet for 2nd straight year on March 20 at WakeMed Soccer Park

CARY, N.C. (Feb. 11, 2010) - The Carolina RailHawks will open the 2010 season by taking on Major League Soccer's New England Revolution in the second annual Community Shield match at WakeMed Soccer Park on March 20 at 7 p.m.

Tickets for the match are on sale now and they will be sold through a two-games-for-the-price-of-one special. Fans can purchase the Community Shield Exhibition Package, which will gain entry to the March 20 match against New England and a March 27 friendly against the 2009 USL First Division champion Montreal Impact, for $12, $17 or $22. Contact the LGFCU Box Office at 919-859-5425 or visit www.carolinarailhawks.com for additional ticket information.

"New England has been one of the best teams in MLS for the last number of years, and they've got some great players, like Shalrie Joesph, Taylor Twellman and Matt Reis," said Carolina coach Martin Rennie. "It's a good way to start the season at home. It'll be early in our season, but it will be a good test."

The Revolution will spend 10 days training at WakeMed Soccer Park leading up to the match with the RailHawks. New England last season went 11-10-9 and finished third in MLS' Eastern Division. In addition to the MLS playoffs, the Revs also reached the SuperLiga semifinals and participated in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup last year.

The RailHawks won the 2009 Community Shield with a 1-0 victory over the Revolution at WakeMed Soccer Park. The Revs outshot Carolina 11-6, but goalkeepers Eric Reed (zero saves) and Caleb Patterson (four saves) combined for the shutout. Mark Schulte scored the game's only goal in the 16th minute.

This year's meeting will be the third between the two clubs all-time. In addition to the 2009 Community Shield match, they also met in the semifinals of the 2007 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. The Revs prevailed 2-1 in overtime on a neutral field in New Britain, Conn., and went on to win the first trophy in their club's history.

"We're pleased to return to Cary for another preseason training trip," said New England coach Steve Nicol. "The RailHawks have outstanding training facilities and they will also provide a very tough, competitive match in our final test before we open our 2010 MLS season the following weekend."

In coming back to the Triangle in 2010, the Revolution will be bringing several players with ties to the area and the RailHawks. Defender Darrius Barnes is a Southeast Raleigh High alum, played at Duke and played for the RailHawks' PDL team for two summers. Midfielder Michael Videira played alongside Barnes at Duke, as well as the RailHawks' U-23s. And forward Zack Schilawski, the Revs' first-round pick in last month's MLS SuperDraft, is a Cary High alum and also played for the RailHawks' PDL squad for two summers.

This Community Shield match will be the RailHawks' seventh all-time against a team from Major League Soccer. They are 3-3-0 in those matches, with wins over New England, Chicago and Chivas USA.

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