Levis signs with Whitecaps U-23, eyes MLS opportunity

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by James Nielsen, Highlanders Communications

March 28, 2014, VICTORIA (ISN) – The Victoria Highlanders FC would like to congratulate former midfielder Brett Levis on his recent signing with the Vancouver Whitecaps development team. Levis will receive opportunities to train with the first-team and potentially crack the MLS roster in the future.

This is a great opportunity for Levis, who had a breakout season with Victoria in 2013, finishing the season in ninth place among overall scorers with 23 points in 14 games. Levis’ and the Highlanders season generated interest in the young player, who was invited to train in Vancouver with the ‘Caps in August of last year.

“We’ve been in discussions with Brett and the University of Saskatchewan knowing that this opportunity had presented itself,” stated Highlanders general manager Mark deFrias. “Brett had a fantastic season with our organization in 2013 and part of the reason we advanced to the PDL Final Four. We obviously have mixed emotions not seeing Brett back this year, but we knew his previous season would attract MLS attention and fully support his decision to pursue this opportunity.”

Levis’ move to an MLS franchise showcases the Highlanders dedication to developing players from both a grassroots and collegiate level. The opportunity to develop players from any age and provide them with the routes to professional soccer is the definition and overall goal of The Highlanders Way.

“Going to Victoria was the best decision I ever made,” said Levis. “For my soccer career it was a huge stepping stone. Without Mark [deFrias] and Steve [Simonson, head coach of the Highlanders] giving me an opportunity I wouldn’t have had the chance to show people what I can do at that level.”

Levis will debut in the blue and white at the Highlanders home opening game, facing his old team and old city.

“The fans were absolutely amazing last season and it was such an honour to have had the opportunity to play in front of them,” said Levis. “I don’t really know what to expect [when we play them in Victoria.] I’m a bit nervous obviously. I made the decision to move to the Whitecaps, to be in the MLS environment day in and day out. I hope the fans understand because without them I wouldn’t have been able to make this opportunity happen. I really appreciated all their support in Victoria.”

The Highlanders wish all the best to Levis as he continues towards his dreams of signing an MLS contract.

The Highlanders organization has had a very active offseason and is excited to announce this season’s remaining signings and developments with our fans in the upcoming weeks. The 2014 PDL season begins May 4 against Whitecaps FC U-23. For tickets and all the latest news, please visit www.victoriahighlandersfc.com 

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