Markanich’s brace lifts Charleston past Birmingham 2-0

Charleston’s next match will be away vs. Hartford Athletic on Fri., July 12, Returning Home On July 19th

Battery Media

The Charleston Battery triumphed 2-0 over Birmingham Legion FC on Friday at Patriots Point in a match that was nationally televised on ESPN2. It might’ve been the day after Independence Day, but Nick Markanich provided plenty of fireworks with a brace that powered Charleston past visitors. The Battery were relentless in their second consecutive victory and 10th shutout of the regular season.

The Battery completed a clean sweep over Birmingham in the regular season series and now have won five consecutive matches over Legion FC dating back to 2023. 

Charleston started the night on the front foot and appeared eager to pick up where they left off from the previous week’s five-goal performance. The Battery recorded five shots in the opening 11 minutes of action, but Chris Allan’s strike off the post in the 5th minute was the closest to going in.

Goalkeeper Adam Grinwis was tested for the first time in the 17th minute for a save on Tabort Preston’s shot. The game began to settle more as the half wore on. 

The key moment of the first half occurred when Emilio Ycaza was taken down in the box following a well-worked counterattack in the 40th minute. Nick Markanich stepped up to the spot and converted the opening goal in the 43rd minute. It was Markanich’s 14th goal of the season and added to his league-leading total.

Charleston took the 1-0 lead over Birmingham into the break after holding the lion’s share of possession (59%) and shots (12 to five).

The Battery came out of the interval eager to double their lead in front of the home crowd. MD Myers came close to doing that in the 57th minute when his valiant effort into the box came up just short with a shot off the post. 

Markanich scored Charleston’s second goal in the 70th minute to make the score 2-0. Arturo Rodriguez made an instant impact off the bench and delivered a perfect cross to Markanich inside the box. From there, Markanich’s header found the top corner of the net.

The goal was Markanich’s 15th goal and third multi-goal game of the season. Rodriguez’s assist was his fourth of the year, the most on the team. 

Charleston continued to assert their will on the game in the waning moments of the match, holding roughly 67% of possession in the second half. Birmingham recorded only two shots on target in the second stanza, both easy saves for Grinwis. The Battery saw out the 2-0 victory for their second consecutive win and a clean sweep over Birmingham in the regular season series.

It’s also Charleston’s fifth consecutive victory over Birmingham across the regular season and playoffs. Charleston’s record advances to 10W-2L-6D (36pts), placing them in second in the Eastern Conference, just two points outside of first, as of writing. The clean sheet was the Battery’s 10th of the regular season, the most in the Championship, and the seventh for Grinwis, second-most in the Championship.

Charleston’s next match will be away vs. Hartford Athletic on Fri., July 12. The Battery return home on Fri., July 19th to host Miami FC at Patriots Point. Tickets for the game are on sale now via, the club’s exclusive digital ticketing provider.