FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mount Pleasant, S.C.
FLEET TO SUSPEND OPERATIONS FOR THE 2022 SEASON
MARCH 30, 2022
Today, Sarah Michner, owner and general manager of the Charleston Fleet, a Charleston-based women’s soccer team in the Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL), announced the team is suspending operations for the 2022 season set to begin in May. This difficult decision came after the Fleet was unable to secure a suitable home venue for this season.
The WPSL is the longest active women’s soccer league in the United States. Established in 1998, the WPSL has grown at an average of 12% over its 23-season history – a consistent trend rarely achieved in team sports that also makes it the largest women’s soccer league in the world.
During the Fleet’s inaugural season in 2017, they were the Carolina Division Champions. The roster regularly consists of accomplished Division I athletes including players from Clemson, Duke, Wofford, Utah Valley State, and Cal State Fullerton as well local players from the College of Charleston and Coastal Carolina. From the beginning, the Fleet garnered an enthusiastic and loyal fan base. Though the 2020 season was canceled by the league and contests in 2021 were limited due to COVID-19, Fleet fans were anticipating a great season in 2022.
Since 2017, the Fleet has played its home games at the College of Charleston (CofC) soccer stadium at Patriots Point. Earlier this month, MIchner was notified that the CofC facilities – now also used by the Charleston Battery – would not be made available to the Fleet due to anticipated overuse. Efforts to find alternative facilities on such short notice came up empty.
“I am disappointed. Our players are disappointed. Our fans are disappointed,” Michner states. “The Fleet provides an important outlet for college and select local high school players to maintain their fitness and game readiness through the summer. Our matches are competitive and entertaining, and the Patriots Point location has been a perfect venue for players and fans alike. Most importantly, the Fleet has given youth players – particularly young girls – an opportunity to watch high-level soccer in the community. It gives them something to aspire to,” she concludes.
Michner is grateful to the players, fans, volunteers and many local families who have provided housing for out-of-town Fleet players in previous years. She anticipates the Fleet will return for the 2023 season.
For more information or to contact the Charleston Fleet, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org