Local Standouts Ink With Stars For 2015-16

by Brett Gleason

TACOMA, Wash. -- Tacoma Stars Head Coach and General Manager Darren Sawatzky today announced the signing of defender Chase Hanson, midfielder Troy Peterson, and midfielder Jamael Cox for the 2015-16 season.

“I know all three of these players well after working with them through youth soccer on many levels up through the Sounders Academy and the Sounders U23 team,” Sawatzky said. “I have known Chase and his family since he was bouncing on my knee as a toddler and Troy and Jamael are incredible local players that raise the level of our team with their experience. We will look to all three of them to hit the ground running this winter.”

Hanson, 23, joins the Stars after a collegiate career that included three years at Seattle University and one year at Barry University in Florida. Hanson also played for Sawatzky in the Sounders Academy and each summer for the past three years with the 2015 Western Conference Champion Sounders U23 team. Hanson’s father, Dave, is the head coach of the Thomas Jefferson high school squad that won the 2013 WIAA 4A state championship and has worked with Sawatzky at the Highline Premier Football Club.

“Signing with the Tacoma Stars is a true honor,” Hanson said. “I look forward to being part of a club that has a great history and looks to make a run in its first full season. I am excited to contribute to a young team and continue my career under an outstanding coaching staff and club.”

Peterson, 23, graduated from the College of Charleston this winter after playing four collegiate division one seasons.  Peterson was an all-star midfielder in the Sounders Academy after playing club soccer at Washington Premier FC in Tacoma, where he spent time playing youth soccer under former Tacoma Star greats Gary Heale, Jimmy McAllister, and Ralph Black. Peterson was a stalwart midfielder for the Sounders U23 Western Conference Championship team this summer.

“I am excited to further my career coming out of college and I couldn’t be happier to make the leap to the next level with a local team in front of all the hometown fans,” Peterson said. “I grew up being coached by a lot of former Tacoma Stars players and I’m happy to be able to put on the jersey myself.”

Cox, 23, comes to the Stars after playing this past summer for the Burlingame Dragons in the PDL (USL Premier Development League). Cox played local club soccer before working his way into the Sounders Academy and the Sounders U23 team. Chasing the dream on the road less traveled, Cox went to the Glasgow Rangers of the Scottish Premier League looking to sign a contract. Cox lost an opportunity after performing well in the trial when the Scottish giant went into arbitration. Cox eventually signed with the Tampa Bay Rowdies for one NASL season before returning to the northwest.
“I am excited about signing and playing for the Tacoma Stars this upcoming season,” Cox said. “I’m glad to be playing in my hometown and I am ready to contribute to the team.”

With the signing of these three local players, the Tacoma Stars continue toward their goal of being a community asset and becoming the winter destination for professional soccer in the northwest.

Season ticket packages, group outings, and suite offerings for the Tacoma Stars 2015 season are available now. To purchase, call 1-844-STARS-TIME or visit the Stars online at www.tacomastars.com. The most up-to-date news and notes about the Stars leading up to the start of the 2015 season can be found by following the Stars on Twitter (@TacomaStarsSC) or liking the team on Facebook.