Skyhawks start to reload, not rebuild

Division II men’s soccer champions sign British midfielder

The saying goes that good teams don’t rebuild, they reload.

The Fort Lewis College men’s soccer team, fresh off the program’s third national title, are looking to do just that.

On national signing day, FLC announced Parker Kennedy, a four-year starter from Highland Park High School in Dallas, signed a national letter of intent to join the Skyhawks.

The reload started with the transfer of Sameth Al-Basith, an early signee to the program.

Kennedy, a two-year captain and all-district player, played fullback and the midfield on the right side of the pitch.

“He comes from a very strong academy soccer background and has a great deal of potential that we welcome in all our players,” FLC head coach Oige Kennedy said in a news release. “He is a technically solid player, and, although has played in a defensive position, he likes to get forward and join the attack and that suits our football philosophy.”

Al-Basith already is enrolled in classes at Fort Lewis after transferring from East Tennessee State University, where he took classes but didn’t play soccer. The 5-8 central midfielder hails from England and likely will be in the mix to replace departed senior central midfielder Cory Dean next season.

“We feel he will bring energy to the team and will be hungry for success, which is the cutting edge we will need from all our players,” Kennedy said.

Al-Basith played club soccer for Cardiff City FC’s and West Ham United FC’s feeder systems before heading to the United States.

Fort Lewis is looking to replace seven seniors: defenders Berekk Blackwell and Fabian Kling, midfielders Dean, Markus Lux and Joey Madigan, forward Thomas Hoang and goalkeeper Ryan Wirth.