Club enters 14th season with new nickname, colors, website
The 2010 Premier Development League and Super Y-League season begins a new era for Ocean City FC. The club enters its 14th season as a United Soccer Leagues franchise -- their 8th in the PDL -- with a brand new identity.
The numerous entries submitted to the club’s “Name That Team” contest produced a great list of potential nicknames, but after much debate, it was agreed that Nor’easters was the best name and the best fit for Ocean City FC.
The winner of the contest was Matt Jernee of Absecon, NJ.
A nor’easter is a weather phenomenon that largely exists in the winter season, but can occur at any time of the year. Weather.com defines a nor’easter as a ferocious storm that “gets its name from its continuously strong northeasterly winds blowing in from the ocean ahead of the storm and over the coastal areas."
“When you think of a Nor’easter, you think of strength, approaching danger, and speed,” said Ocean City FC president John Granese, who has been in charge of the club since 2005. “It’s a perfect fit for this dynamic PDL team. It’s also good since the majority of our players are from the tri-state area in the northeast and represent some of the best talent this region has to offer.”
“The name ‘Ocean City Football Club’ was chosen as a tribute to the European heritage that has been strongly connected with this team throughout its history,” said general manager Neil Holloway. “As for the nickname, we were looking for a unique name that would be catchy and represent our region. The name has been a bit of a buzz word recently with the heavy storms that we’ve experienced in the last few months, and I think it will catch on quickly.”
Ocean City FC will also adopt the colors of Reading FC, the English Championship side that the team has been affiliated with since 2008. The Royals will also be providing jerseys for the club so that the PDL and all of the Super Y-League teams will wear the same shirts as Reading FC.
“Thanks to the support of Reading FC, we were able to adopt the blue and white colors, in addition to taking the Royals’ logo and making it our own,” said Holloway, a former Reading youth academy player.
The club’s primary logo borrows from the badge used by Reading FC for decades, by inserting an ocean wave and a compass pointing to the northeast in place of Reading’s lion and crown in the original.
The secondary logo is a menacing, yet dynamic, ocean wave that hopes to reflect the power of a nor’easter storm.
“In our 14th season, I am very excited to be leading the team into this new era,” said Holloway. “Soccer in the United States has been evolving for over a decade and we believe the changes we have made in the off-season will help solidify our club for the next decade and beyond.
“With the impact of the new Major League Soccer franchise, the Philadelphia Union, and the FIFA World Cup taking place this summer in South Africa, there is going to be a real buzz around this summer, so it is an ideal time to re-brand and re-name our Ocean City soccer franchise.”
|Ocean City FC Super Y coach Carl Dickson models off the club’s new home jersey with general manager Neil Holloway (left) and president John Granese. Photo: Ocean City FC|
Ocean City FC played their inaugural season in 1997 as the “South Jersey Barons” in the United Soccer Leagues’ D3 Pro League. They were based in the Winslow, NJ and even spent a couple seasons in Ocean City as a professional team until joining the PDL in 2003. Two years later, the club moved to Ocean City and changed the team name to the Ocean City Barons.
This past off-season, the club’s relationship with the South Jersey Barons youth academy came to an end, giving the PDL and Super Y-League teams an opportunity to re-brand themselves.
“The city of Ocean City has opened its arms and embraced this team,” said Granese. “We are proud to represent the city and add to the excitement of this fine resort town and year-round community. We can’t thank the city enough for their support.”
The 2010 begins with a new name, colors, jerseys, but the high expectations remain the same for the team.
“We’ve had much success over the last 13 years, especially during our time as a PDL team (4th best overall record, 2nd best home record since 2003),” said Granese. “Last year was an unforgettable year with our exciting runs in the playoffs and the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup, but this year we aim to be even better and our goal is to bring a championship to Ocean City.