Weaver, a former Seattle U star, gets a shot with Sounders
Weaver, a 30-year-old Kent native, starred at Seattle University 10 years ago and then for the lower-league Sounders.
Seattle Times staff reporter
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TUKWILA — Cam Weaver’s arrival to Sounders FC’s preseason training camp Friday was unexpected, but quickly noticed.
It’s always going to be hard to sneak a 6-foot-4 forward with MLS experience into practice, but it’s almost impossible when he is flush with local connections. Weaver, a 30-year-old Kent native, starred at Seattle University 10 years ago and then for the lower-league Sounders to start a professional career that has included stops in Norway and San Jose.
He became a free agent after last season when the Houston Dynamo declined an option on his contract.
“It’s just been trying to figure out what’s next for me,” Weaver said of the offseason.
“I’m just very fortunate that the Sounders are letting me come out and train and kind of see what’s going on and if things might be able to work out. We’ll see what happens.”
Weaver played the last 4½ seasons in Houston, which included two trips to the MLS Cup, but he has always kept an eye on the happenings in his hometown. It wasn’t long ago when he was putting his stamp on Seattle soccer, helping lead the Redhawks to an NCAA Division II national championship in 2004 and finishing as the USL First Division’s co-leading scorer with the Sounders in 2006.
Interestingly, former teammate Zach Scott and coach Brian Schmetzer are still around with the Sounders. Much has changed with the leap to MLS, though, particularly in support, with an average attendance of 44,038 last season.
“Seeing everything that’s happened, the level that has changed since then, is just incredible,” said Weaver, whose parents still live in Kent. “I’m a Northwest kid at heart, so even though I haven’t been a part of all this so far, I just feel proud that this whole area has just embraced the sport and the team and everything. ... It’s cool. I still feel somewhat of a part of it, even though I’ve been on the outside for a while.”
Weaver, who had been training at Seattle U to stay in shape, has a difficult task of making the Sounders’ roster, joining with just three weeks before the season opener. Coach Sigi Schmid said he waited to invite Weaver until the first round of cuts in training camp had been made.
“He wants to be back in Seattle, and obviously he’s got experience in the league,” Schmid said of Weaver. “We’ll see if it’s the right fit, if it makes sense. If it makes sense, we’ll do it. If not, nothing is going to be lost by it.”
Fishlock stays with Reign
Reign FC has re-signed midfielder Jess Fishlock, who was named to the NWSL’s Best XI last season, to a new one-year contract. The deal also includes club options for 2015 and 2016.
“For me, playing for the Reign is an honor,” Fishlock said in a news release.
• MRI results Thursday revealed no significant ligament or meniscus damage to the knee of Sounders FC draft pick Jimmy Ockford, according to Schmid: “Just a slight bone bruise.”
• The next round of training camp cuts could be made before Wednesday’s departure for Charleston, S.C., Schmid said.
Joshua Mayers: 206-464-3184
On Twitter @joshuamayers