As the Wilmington Hammerheads continue preparations for the 2016 season, the newest expansion team in the United Soccer League grabbed three former players from the local side as part of its inaugural signing class.
The club announced it had signed a number of USL veterans, including a trio of former Wilmington Hammerheads FC players in Paul Nicholson, Ross Tomaselli and Corben Bone.
Nicholson signed his first professional contract in February of 2011 with USL Club Wilmington Hammerheads. He made his professional debut in the Hammerheads’ first game of the season on April 17. He scored his professional goal in a 3-2 win over the Pittsburgh Riverhounds on April 29 and re-signed with Wilmington for the 2012 season. In 2013, Nicholson returned for another season with the Hammerheads and signed a two-year contract with Wilmington for the 2014-15 seasons.
Tomaselli signed with his hometown USL Club Wilmington Hammerheads in 2014. He played soccer at Wake Forest University from 2010-13 and graduated from New Hanover High School.
Bone was drafted in the first round (13th overall) of the 2010 MLS SuperDraft by the Chicago Fire. He made his professional debut on May 8, 2010 in a game versus Toronto FC.
On December 12, 2013, Bone moved to the Philadelphia Union when he was selected in the 2013 MLS Re-Entry Draft. He was sent out on loan to USL Club Wilmington Hammerheads in 2014 and made his move permanent last season.