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September 25, 2023

Former Tiger earns starting MLS job

Aralynn Minnick // Asst. Photo Editor

Former Clemson goalie and 2021 National Champion George Marks saves a potential goal from UNC during a scrimmage in March 2022.

As the 2023 MLS regular season begins, a former Clemson Tiger has been making noise in the starting lineup. 

Charlotte FC goalkeeper George Marks has taken the starting role as of late, with six straight starts between the posts for the team.  

During this stretch of games, he has recorded 29 saves and allowed nine goals. In a recent game on April 22, Marks received the first shutout of his professional career, stopping three shots against the Columbus Crew. He did not start in the most recent match on April 25 against South Georgia Tormenta FC.

After Charlotte’s 3-0 loss to Atlanta United in early March, the managerial staff decided a change in the net was needed and called the second-year ball-stopper up to the starting role.

In his first start of the season on March 18, Marks stopped seven shots, giving Charlotte its first win of the season as it defeated Orlando City SC by a score of 2-1. Since then, the former Tiger recorded another win and three draws, only losing once while starting. 

Charlotte FC is currently in 11th place in the Eastern Conference with nine points. As Marks looks to earn the job permanently, and with plenty more season to play, it will be interesting to see what the program could do with him in the net. The team has a lot of work to do, however, with only the top seven teams in the conference playing in the playoffs. 

Marks, the starting goalkeeper in Clemson’s national championship win over Washington in 2021, was selected by Charlotte FC in the third round of the 2022 MLS SuperDraft. He had one start in his rookie season before receiving the starting job this March. 

As the season goes on, Marks has enjoyed an on-field reunion with another Clemson alumnus. Defender Hamady Diop, the No. 1 overall pick in this year’s MLS SuperDraft, was selected by Charlotte last December.

As the MLS season rolls into the summer, look for Marks to continue to provide Charlotte FC with a spark to make some noise in the Eastern Conference. 

Statistics and records are accurate as of April 25.

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Griffin Barfield, Asst. Sports Editor
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