Highlanders Sign TRU's Josh Banton

VICTORIA, B.C. – Victoria Highlanders FC are pleased to announce the signing of Josh Banton, pending USL League and BC Soccer approval. The centre back is the latest addition to join Thomas Niendorf’s 2019 USL League Two side.

Banton, born in Leigh-on-sea, England, has experience with the youth side of English League One squad Southend United and training with the first team. In 2017, Banton moved to Canada to attend Thompson River University (TRU) to play for the TRU Wolfpack. The defender cemented himself as an integral part of the squad in his second season, making 16 appearances and playing the full 90 minutes in all but one of those games.

“Josh is a new player, but we expect leadership from the back,” added Niendorf. “He’s a very positive player, a very coachable player, and has a strong technical ability of play. Within the centre back position we feel he can bring that leadership and a strong pace of play.”

"I'm very excited to play with the Highlanders," stated Josh Banton. " Thomas has a distinct style of play he's looking to achieve and I really enjoy that style of soccer. To play against the best of the best in collegiate soccer is going to be an opportunity I look forward to, I want to test myself against top quality strikers."

His defensive abilities may be his most noticeable traits, as he helped TRU to 5 clean sheets last season, but his ability in front of the opposition's goal cannot be overlooked after he pitched in with four goals for TRU last season. The 23-year-old’s strong play last season helped the Wolfpack capture their second Canada West Bronze Medal in as many years.

Welcome to the Highlanders, Josh!

The Highlanders start their season at home against Lane United on Friday, May 10th, with a 7:00 p.m. kickoff at Centennial Stadium. The Highlanders will be hosting a Drums 'N' Kicks launch party on May 5th Phillip's Brewery tasting lounge at 5pm. Ribs and drumsticks infused with craft Phillips Beer, a silent auction, and a meet and greet with players, staff and owners. Tickets are $100 and include your $75 season ticket. For more information, visit eventbrite