TAMPA — The Tampa Bay Rowdies have signed their first Pinellas County product, Northeast High alum Chad Burt.
Burt, the assistant director of coaching for Simply Soccer Futbol Club in St. Petersburg — the same club program he played for — was brought in this preseason on a trial basis and has one goal and an assist in two exhibition games.
"We have added another excellent player to our roster with the signing of Burt," Rowdies coach Paul Dalglish said. "His hard work and commitment during his trial period convinced us that he was the perfect fit for our team. He grew up in Tampa Bay, loves the game and understands the history behind the team and what we are looking to build with it."
Burt, a 22-year-old midfielder, played for the Carolina Railhawks of the USL First Division last season and was with indoor Milwaukee Wave of the MISL in 2008-09, tallying 13 points in 20 games. He also played for the MLS' Colorado Rapids U-23 team and the Atlanta Silverbacks.
The club also acquired goalkeeper Josh Lambo on loan from the MLS' FC Dallas. Lambo, an accomplished young player, played on the U.S. U-17 World Cup team and the U-20 national team before being drafted in the 2008 MLB SuperDraft by Dallas with the eighth overall pick.
Tampa Bay plays its third of five preseason games Friday against the MLS' Philadelphia Union at the University of Tampa at 7:30 p.m. The Rowdies open the regular season April 16 in Baltimore.
Eduardo A. Encina can be reached at email@example.com