Bethlehem Steel FC announced Wednesday that the club has signed midfielder Chris Wingate to a one-year contract.
“It’s something you dream about your whole life,” Wingate said. “I’m happy to have found a home within this organization and despite my short time with the club, it already feels like I’m a part of the family. It’s been a different journey than I’d dreamt of having to come in late to the club during the preseason but it motivated me to work ever harder and prove that I could be one of the guys.”
“Chris is an important addition in an area of the field where we needed some depth and I think Chris is more than just depth,” Steel FC head coach Brendan Burke said. “He is someone has a great background based on his college career. We were fortunate to be able to pick up him up after he was released and he hasn’t had a bad day in training since he arrived. Plus, he has brought a steady influence to our group.”
Wingate joins Steel FC after a strong preseason trial that featured four appearances including a start against Notre Dame on March 16. Wingate joined Steel FC midway through the preseason after being drafted No. 54 overall by MLS-side New York City FC.
Wingate had a stellar four-year career at New Hampshire, appearing in 70 games and earning 55 starts. During his Wildcat career, the 22-year-old scored 13 goals and had 15 assists. Wingate was named the 2016 America East Midfielder of the Year and received First Team All-Conference honors his senior season, scoring four goals and adding eight assists as the club posted a 12-win season.
A native from Hovik, Norway, Wingate thrived off the field as well, being selected as a senior CLASS award finalist that honors the attributes of NCAA Division I senior student-athletes in four areas: community, classroom, character and competition.
Last summer, Wingate played in the Premier Development League for the Seattle Sounders U-23 team. He appeared in seven matches, scoring a goal and assisting on another as the club finished second in the Northwest Division.
TRANSACTION: Bethlehem Steel FC sign midfielder Chris Wingate to a one-year contract on April 5, 2017.
Name: Chris Wingate
Weight: 160 lbs.
Jersey Number: 43
Date of Birth: July 3, 1994
Hometown: Hovik, Norway
Last club: New Hampshire (NCAA)
Acquired: Signed on April 5, 2017