Photo by Gary Rohman
Prior to a breakthrough season with Sporting Kansas City in 2015, Tim Melia had steadily risen through the ranks over the past 10 years.
NCAA Division III to Division II. USL to MLS. Backup to starter.
Now in the spotlight, his performances in net -- including seven saves in the U.S. Open Cup Final on Wednesday and a six-save shutout in last night's 1-0 win at Portland -- haven't gotten unnoticed.
During Sunday's match between FC Dallas and the Houston Dynamo on ESPN2, Taylor Twellman gave his endorsement for Melia's stellar play.
Forward Krisztian Nemeth scores his tenth goal (assisted by Graham Zusi) of the regular season in the 83rd minute against the Portland Timbers.
Forward Krisztian Nemeth ties the 2015 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup final against the Philadelphia Union at PPL Park in the 65th minute, assisted by Graham Zusi.
A new episode of the Sporting KC Show aired last night on Sports Radio 810 WHB. Hosts Nate Bukaty and Carter Augustine spoke with assistant coach Kerry Zavagnin and ESPN color commentator Taylor Twellman.
Twellman will serve as color commentator for tonight's Open Cup broadcast on ESPN2 (6pm CT kickoff) while Bukaty and Augustine will call the game for 810 WHB alongside analyst Jake Yadrich.
Listen to the full podcast of the SKC Show below including both interview:
Sporting Kansas City earned a 1-1 draw against the Seattle Sounders FC Sunday afternoon at Sporting Park. Following the match, ESPN broadcasters Adrian Healey and Taylor Twellman offered their thoughts on the match including a positive assessment on Peter Vermes' game plan.
Youth development is one of the most interesting and divisive topics in American soccer. Coaches and scouts are constantly scouring the country for the next Lionel Messi or even the next Landon Donovan.
And that conversation moved back to the forefront once again last week when MLSsoccer.com released it's 24 Under 24. The list, voted on by soccer media members in North America is a comprehensive list of the top 24 players in MLS under the age of 24. Sporting KC defender Erik Palmer-Brown came in at No. 24 in his first appearance on the list.
So what is Sporting Kansas City's philosophy when it comes to youth development? During a recent trip to New York, Sporting KC assistant technical director Mike Jacobs (pictured, left) sat down with MLSsoccer.com editor Andrew Wiebe for an ExtraTime Radio interview to offer his perspective on youth development and how it relates to Sporting KC. Jacobs covered a variety of topics including Major League Soccer's connection with USL, the current state of college soccer and Sporting KC's goals for youth development. Listen to the full interview below starting at 24:45.
Benny Feilhaber joined The Sporting KC Show on Tuesday ahead of Sporting KC's mid-week match with the Houston Dynamo at BBVA Compass Stadium. Feilhaber earned MLS Player of the Week honors for his two-goal performance against FC Dallas in Sporting KC's last outing and leads the League in assists with 14 this season.
Sporting KC Show hosts Nate Bukaty, Carter Augustine and Andy Gruenebaum opened the hour discussing Sporting KC's dominant performance against Western Conference contenders FC Dallas to snap a five-game winless slide:
Feilhaber chimed in with his take on Friday's match, giving teammates Soni Mustivar and Graham Zusi praise for their performances in the victory before providing insight on tonight's contest against the Dynamo:
The trio of hosts wrapped things up by analyzing the MLS playoff race in advance of this evening's match between two Western Conference rivals:
This week's Sporting Spotlight features the team's leading goalscorer, Dom Dwyer. The Englishman had a busy offseason, highlighted by finalizing a contract extension with the club and getting married to U.S. Women's National Team striker Sydney Leroux.
Watch the two-part segment below as 38 the Spot host Crystle Lampitt gives us the scoop about the hottest soccer couple, including details about their big wedding celebration next month and the best date spot in Kansas City.
The 2nd annual Victory Project Blood Drive was held Sporting Park in partnership with the American Red Cross this past weekend. Over 170 donors attended the event and up to 483 lives will potentially be saved from the 161 pints of blood donated.
Donors, many of which were first timers, each received a commemorative “I Bleed Sporting Blue” t-shirt, complimentary Papa John’s pizza and tours of the Sporting Kansas City locker room. Sporting KC teammates Mikey Lopez, Saad Abdul-Salaam, Erik Palmer-Brown and Jacob Peterson were on site to meet with donors.
“I was pretty nervous since it was my first time donating and I really don’t like needles,” said Jimmy Mack. “ In reality, the experience was pretty painless. When you think about the fact that you’re helping potentially save someone’s life, the little pain you do experience is totally worth it. I’m really glad I donated!”
September is an opportune time for The Victory Project to partner with The Red Cross as it is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. By giving blood, fans could impact the lives of children battling cancer as many receive regular platelet and blood transfusions during treatment. The Victory Project’s mission is to tangibly impact the lives of children battling cancer and other life’s challenges.
Spotting your favorite Sporting Kansas City players enjoying themselves in Westport wouldn’t be considered too out of the ordinary but having them serve you drinks from behind the bar would be.
During last week’s Celebrity Bartending event, Sporting KC teammates rolled up their sleeves to help raise money for the team’s foundation – The Victory Project. Dom Dwyer, Kevin Ellis, Chance Myers, Graham Zusi, Tim Melia, Marcel de Jong, Ike Opara, Matt Besler, Roger Espinoza, Jacob Peterson, Seth Sinovic and Jon Kempin joined nearly 250 people at the Westport Ale House for the one-of-a-kind event.
Attendees each made a $10 donation at the door, received a complimentary Boulevard Beer and had the chance to mingle with their favorite players. DJ Ashton Martin provided live entertainment and all proceeds benefited The Victory Project. Charlie Hustle was also in the house, donating $5 from each t-shirt sale to the foundation, and each of the players provided signed gear for a silent auction.
The Victory Project is Sporting Kansas City’s foundation supporting children battling cancer and other life challenges. To learn more about The Victory Project please follow @VictoryKC on Twitter or Facebook.