Wingate Faces

Luke Mulholland '11

Real Salt Lake has signed Wingate University All-American midfielder Luke Mulholland '11 to a Major League Soccer contract.

He made his debut appearance for Real Salt Lake on March 8 against the LA Galaxy. As he stepped out on the field in front of 25,000+ fans, his dream became a reality. By stepping onto the StubHub Center's field, he joined the likes of US Men's National players Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake) and Republic of Ireland captain Robbie Keane (LA Galaxy) out on the pitch: not bad company for a first appearance.

Within 10 minutes of coming onto the field, Mulholland was already in the mix and causing problems for the LA Galaxy. In the 76th minute, a controversial off-sides call kept Mulholland from a dream start to a promising career. Having gotten himself into a great position in the center of the box, he was deemed off-sides upon putting Joao Plata's saved shot into the back of the net when he appeared to be well onsides. Mulholland would finish the game with a solid 30 minutes under his MLS belt.

One week later Mulholland landed another opportunity to put the ball in the back of the net; this time against the San Jose Earthquakes. Real Salt Lake was up 2-1 heading into first half stoppage time and in the fourth minute Mulholland scored his first MLS goal off of a rebound from San Jose goalkeeper, Jon Busch. In two games, Mulholland has seen 93 minutes of play, had two shots on goal and one goal scored.

The 25-year-old Mulholland spent the last two seasons with the NASL's Tampa Bay Rowdies. He experienced great success in Tampa, scoring 17 goals and registering 13 assists in 51 league appearances. Mulholland was the first player to be named to the NASL Best XI in back-to-back seasons. The Rowdies won the 2012 NASL Soccer Bowl title. Mulholland and RSL goalkeeper Jeff Attinella were Tampa teammates in 2012.

"Our entire team past and present is very proud of Luke," Wingate Director of Soccer and head men's soccer coach Gary Hamill ‘94 said. "We are so excited for him.”

Mulholland began his professional career in 2011 with the USL Pro Wilmington Hammerheads, earning 2011 USL Pro Rookie of the Year honors. He was selected to the USL Pro Team of the Year. Mulholland signed with the NASL Minnesota Stars late in the NASL's 2011 campaign, helping lead the team to the NASL title.

As a Wingate senior, Mulholland was named to the 2010 Daktronics NCAA Division II honorable mention All-America team by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). Mulholland earned All-America honors three times in his illustrious career. In 2009, Mulholland was named to the Daktronics men's soccer All-American first team. He was the South Atlantic Conference Player of the Year the same season. The previous year, Mulholland earned NSCAA/Adidas All-America third team laurels.

In 2010, he led Wingate with his 0.50 assists per match. Mulholland was second in the SAC and 14th in the NCAA Division II in the same category. His unselfish play helped Wingate lead the SAC and chart in the number 10 spot nationally in scoring offense (2.60 goals per match).

A four-year All-SAC performer, Mulholland assisted on Wingate's last three game-winning overtime goals of the 2010 season. His 100 points puts him in the top 15 in SAC history. Mulholland's career totals include 37 goals and 26 assists.

During his tenure, Mulholland led the Bulldogs to a 56-21-4 overall record. Wingate qualified for the NCAA Division II play-offs three times (2007, 2009 and 2010); the Bulldogs won the SAC regular season championship in 2010.


David Sherwood, Kim Williams, Ben Richardson, Peter Trask and Real Salt Lake contributed to this article.