Over the course of our long-lasting partnership with MUSC Health and MUSC Sports Medicine, our Charleston Battery players have received state-of-the-art healthcare. MUSC has treated short and long-term player injuries getting them back up to speed as quickly as possible.
Battery midfielder Dante Marini suffered a serious knee injury against St. Louis FC on July 15th, 2017. “I just kind of planted wrong and I heard the crunch and pop,” Marini said. “I knew something was wrong but didn’t want to believe it.”
Bobby Weisenberger, the head athletic trainer for the Charleston Battery was out on the field with Marini following the injury. “It was tough,” Weisenberger said of the injury, “I think everyone thought it was the end.” Marini suffered a medial femoral condyle defect. The injury consisted of damage to the bone and ACL.
“His case was very rare,” said MUSC’s Health Sports Medicine Manager Mike Barr. “Usually, with this type of injury, they don’t get back to a professional level.” Marini would miss the remainder of the 2017 season and all of 2018. The injury sidelined Marini for 581 days as he worked through his rehab with MUSC.
Marini returned to action in February against FC Cincinnati in the Carolina Challenge Cup before making his first appearance for the Battery in USL Championship play against Ottawa Fury FC, playing fourteen minutes in a 1-1 draw.
Marini would make his second substitute appearance of the season in the Battery’s next match at home against Hartford Athletic. Marini would replace Romario Piggott in the 63rd minute and score his first goal of the season ten minutes later to double the Battery lead.
The goal would prove to be the winner as Hartford converted a penalty in the 82nd minute. “It’s been a long and tough road, I’ve fought through it and there have been so many ups and downs along the way,” said Marini after the match. “It means so much to me.”
Marini netted his second of the season in dramatic fashion against Memphis 901 FC on April 27th, a goal scored in the final minute of stoppage time to give the Battery their first road win of the season.
With the help and support of the MUSC Health and MUSC Sports Medicine team, Marini has made a full recovery and continues to be a key contributor to the Battery this season. Marini and the Battery play Nashville SC in the Third Round of the U.S. Open Cup tomorrow night and return home for a clash with Birmingham Legion on June 8th.