Seattle Sounders FC today announced that Ezra Hendrickson has been named the first Head Coach of Sounders FC 2, the club’s USL PRO team. Hendrickson has spent the last six seasons as a Sounders FC Assistant Coach and Reserve League Head Coach following a 14-year professional playing career.
“After six years of experience with the organization, Ezra has earned the respect of the players and has gotten to know our Academy very well,” said S2 General Manager Andrew Opatkiewicz. “His years with the First Team will prove to be a huge asset as we look to develop a team that gives players valuable minutes in a professional environment.”
Hendrickson is being made available to media following the team's 11:00 a.m. PST training session at Starfire Sports’ field three on Thursday, November 13. Please note that today’s training session is being held at a new location, as field three is north of Starfire Stadium immediately adjacent to the team’s training facility. Members of the media interested in attending should contact Alex Caulfield [216-978-7212] or Matt Winter [206-639-4610].
"I feel very honored to be appointed Head Coach of S2. Player development is a very important and integral part of any club,” said Hendrickson. “I’m looking forward to developing our younger players as they come through the program, so that we as an organization can have that sustained growth and success.”
Hendrickson was announced as a Sounders FC Assistant Coach on January 20, 2009, after a 14-year professional career, including 12 seasons in Major League Soccer. As a player, he spent parts of eight seasons alongside Sounders FC Head Coach Sigi Schmid, including three campaigns with the Columbus Crew prior to his retirement. He was a member of three MLS Cup championship teams, winning two with Schmid.
“This a great opportunity for Ezra and allows for good continuity in preparation for the S2 players, the First Team and Seattle Sounders FC overall,” said Sounders FC Head Coach Sigi Schmid. “Ezra knows what we’re looking for, knows what it takes to play at this level, and he provides a great bridge from S2 to the Sounders FC First Team.”
In four seasons as Sounders FC Reserve League Head Coach, Hendrickson led the Rave Green to a 19-13-7 record from 2011-14, including an 8-1-1 record and West Division championship in 2011. This season, the Seattle Reserves finished 3-1-3 and went unbeaten (1-0-3) against MLS Reserve opponents.
An NCAA All-American and business administration major at Drake University in Iowa, Hendrickson first played professionally with New Orleans of the USISL Select League (1995-96). A native of the island of St. Vincent in the Caribbean, Hendrickson earned his first international cap in 1995 and served 12 years as captain of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines national team.
The Layou, St. Vincent native earned his U.S. Soccer A Coaching License in December of 2008. He is a resident of Layou, St. Vincent, and has two daughters, Xavia and McKenzie.
ABOUT SOUNDERS FC 2
Announced on October 14, 2014, Sounders FC 2 is the club's Second Team, playing in USL PRO starting in the 2015 season. Known as S2, the team represents a link between the Sounders FC Academy and Sounders FC First Team. Playing its home matches at Starfire Stadium, S2 emphasizes development and community involvement, and will provide a consistent and competitive professional environment for promising Academy players and certain First Team players to progress. The team will operate under the management of Sounders FC and the Sounders Community Trust, an unprecedented, fan-owned organization that will hold a 20-percent interest in the team.