tyson wahl
Joe Maiorana / USA TODAY

Crew SC defender Tyson Wahl to retire after 2016 MLS season

Columbus Crew SC today announced that defender Tyson Wahl intends to retire at the conclusion of the 2016 Major League Soccer season. Wahl, a veteran of 11 years in MLS, has compiled 160 regular-season appearances (138 starts) over the duration of his career. A native of Newport Beach, California, the defender has spent the past four seasons in Columbus.

“After consultation with doctors, I have decided to retire at the end of the season due to multiple concussions this year and the risk associated with continuing to play,” said Wahl. “I am proud to have played in this League for 11 years and wanted to thank the players, coaches and organizations that shared this journey with me.”

Wahl first entered MLS in 2006, when he was drafted 19th overall by the then-Kansas City Wizards in the 2006 MLS SuperDraft after an All-American college career at the University of California. Wahl made 32 appearances with Kansas City between the 2006 and 2008 seasons, including two starts in the 2008 MLS Cup Playoffs.

LISTEN: Tyson Wahl reflects on his career

The defender was then selected by Seattle Sounders FC in the 2008 MLS Expansion Draft and was part of that club's inaugural MLS roster in 2009. As a member of the Rave Green, Wahl helped Seattle win three consecutive Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cups in 2009, 2010 and 2011. He made 39 League appearances over three seasons in Seattle, registering his first and only MLS goal on a free kick against the New England Revolution on June 26, 2011.

“We respect and understand Tyson’s decision to retire at the end of the season,” said Crew SC Sporting Director and Head Coach Gregg Berhalter. “Tyson was a consummate professional and after playing more than a decade in MLS regularly demonstrated what it means to be a true teammate. On behalf of Columbus Crew SC, we would like to congratulate Tyson on a successful career and we wish him the best in his next endeavors as he begins a new chapter in his life.”

Following the 2011 campaign, the Montreal Impact acquired Wahl in a trade from Seattle, as the defender joined another expansion side ahead of its first-ever MLS campaign. Wahl played in 11 matches for Montreal before being acquired by the Colorado Rapids midway through the season, where he made four additional appearances.

After signing with Columbus on January 3, 2013, the 32-year-old is currently in the midst of his fourth season with Crew SC. In his time with the club, he has amassed 74 appearances for Columbus, the most he has recorded with any one team. In the Black & Gold’s MLS Cup Playoff runs under Sporting Director and Head Coach Gregg Berhalter in 2014 and 2015, Wahl made five appearances, with three of them coming as a member of the starting 11.  

Before turning professional, Wahl started every game for the University of California from 2002 through 2005. During his senior season, he anchored the Golden Bears' defense, leading the club to a 15-4-2 record and the quarterfinals of the 2005 NCAA Tournament. As a junior, he was named to the All-Pac 10 second team as well as the Pac-10 All-Academic second team.

Crew SC returns to action tomorrow with a road match at D.C. United on September 28 (7:30 p.m. ET / MyTV Columbus, Time Warner Cable SportsChannel, BCSN2, CD102.5 FM, La Mega 103.1 FM, English radio stream available on ColumbusCrewSC.com).

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