CHARLESTON, SC July 24, 2014 — The Charleston Battery will host the club’s first-ever meeting with Arizona United SC on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. for Thank You Heroes Night, the team’s annual gesture of thanks to the men and women in our military and emergency services.
Tickets are $10 to $18 [843-971-GOAL (4625), or online at charlestonbattery.com) but members of the military, police, fire and first-responders can present their valid I.D. to receive free admission for themselves and their families.
Arizona United rose from the ashes of 2013 USL PRO expansion side Phoenix Wolves FC on the eve of the 2014 season, and the new club has responded with 22 points in 19 matches (a total reduced by a 2-point league penalty). They’ve been on a 2-1-1 roll this month heading into this week’s East Coast road trip to Wilmington on Friday and Charleston on Saturday.
The Battery are coming off two consecutive matches with the Richmond Kickers – a 4-0 drubbing in Virginia last Saturday, and a 1-1 draw at The ‘Baud on Tuesday. Charleston came within the narrowest of margins of grabbing maximum points in the final seconds of stoppage time Tuesday when midfielder Maikel Chang’s shot deflected back into play off the bottom of the crossbar, denying the Battery a cathartic win over the club’s oldest continuous rivals.
Arizona travels to Wilmington on Friday night with a two-point lead on Charleston in the USL PRO playoff race, a tally that highlights the tension that surrounds this contest for both sides. Charleston is currently in 12th place in the league table, but sits just five points off the pace for the final ticket to the postseason. Both teams have been reinforced for the high-summer stretch run, with Charleston re-signing all-star striker Jose Cuevas, and Arizona inking former MLS forwards Long Tan and Sam Garza.
Due to this year’s unbalanced USL PRO schedule, this will be the only meeting between the Battery and Arizona United in 2014.