March 3, 2021

Pro Soccer Returns to Stumptown for NISA Spring Season

Stumptown AC Introduces Seasoned Executive Team, Coach; Unveils Branding

The National Independent Soccer Association (NISA) returns to Charlotte with Stumptown AC led by a seasoned executive team and coach. Ushering in its return to the Charlotte/Matthews community, Stumptown named American soccer veteran Fred Matthes president and Carrie Taylor, recently tapped to lead the launch of a new women’s professional league, head of operations.

For leadership on the pitch, Matthes and Taylor recruited former two-time Portland Timbers assistant coach Rod Underwood as head coach. He and Taylor will oversee player tryouts that begin March 13 and 14. The club will take to the pitch at the 2021 Spring Tournament this April in Chattanooga with a logo and brand identity that signals a bright future and commitment to the community.

"Having a member club in the Charlotte area is really close to the heart of everyone associated with NISA,” says NISA Commissioner John Prutch. “Fred and Carrie have the leadership skill set to make the launch successful. If the interest generated to date among available players and technical staff is any indication, Stumptown already is on its way to bringing more top-quality professional soccer to the Tar Heel state."

Stumptown will loudly advocate the values of community, merit-based soccer, as well as racial justice and equity. Those values are at the core of the league and the club, and they are evident in the deep, pro-level experience of its leadership.

“This is an exciting assignment for all of us,” says Matthes. “Our first order of business was ensuring we hire the best head coach we can – and we did in Rod. We have an embarrassment of riches in terms of talent that can compete from the start and good will across the community. Carrie, Rod and I very much look forward to leveraging both as we grow in the coming weeks.”

The logo is a product of building on the heritage of the town of Matthews and the team moniker. The name is derived from the history of pioneering farmers cutting down so many trees to clear land that the town was left full of stumps. As the club moves forward, it looks to connect with the community by collaborating with charitable organizations to plant trees symbolizing momentous occasions on the pitch and growing partnerships in the local community.

“We will be equitable and inclusive in every facet of our operations,” says Taylor. “From our staffing to our grounds to the game day experience, everyone will feel welcome. Everyone will have an opportunity to contribute to and experience our success.”

Underwood brings experience to Stumptown from almost every facet of the game. He has made his mark as a player, as a coach on all levels, and even in management and scouting. His most recent role as technical director and head coach for Montego Bay United FC in Jamaica, while running his Rod Underwood Consulting firm.

“I’ve always found a lot of joy in building organizations and growing talent; this opportunity fits,” says Underwood. “At Stumptown, we will create opportunities for young players eager to demonstrate their talent and for seasoned players unselfishly ready to share it. All along the way, we will respect and celebrate the heart and the history of this community.”

A three-time player/coach with New Mexico Chiles, Albuquerque Geckos, and South Carolina Shamrocks. Underwood was first team assistant with the Portland Timbers from 2007 to 2009 and again in 2010, head coaching the Cleveland City Stars as well as in the Trinidad and Tobago Pro League in between. Stumptown will announce the balance of the technical staff in the next couple of weeks.

The club will call Matthews Sportsplex home. Schedule and ticket information for the season that starts immediately after the spring tournament will be announced in the coming weeks.

For more information on tryouts visit For more information on schedules and tickets, please visit