NEW YORK – Former Columbia University soccer player Rhys Williams has earned a trial with Orlando City SC.

Williams, who hails from Weston, Fla., will compete for a spot on Orlando City’s reserve team, Orlando City B.

He became the second former Lion to become familiar with the franchise, as Antonio Matarazzo (Class of 2016) was a third-round pick by Orlando last year. Williams also joins the likes of classmate Andrew Tinari, who picked up a training camp invite with Minnesota United FC last week.

The midfielder battled through injuries the last two seasons. He performed in 16 games in 2016, scoring twice and adding three assists. Williams assisted on one of Arthur Bosua’s three goals in Columbia’s 4-0 triumph over Cornell, which sealed the Ivy League title for the Lions.

In his career, Williams tallied seven goals and five assists, and earned second team all-conference honors during his sophomore season. The senior netted two goals over Michigan during his second season with the Lions, picking up Ivy League player of the week honors.

Front Row Soccer editor Michael Lewis has covered 13 World Cups (eight men, five women), seven Olympics and 25 MLS Cups. He has written about New York City FC, New York Cosmos, the New York Red Bulls and both U.S. national teams for Newsday and has penned a soccer history column for the Lewis, who has been honored by the Press Club of Long Island and National Soccer Coaches Association of America, is the former editor of He has written seven books about the beautiful game and has published ALIVE AND KICKING The incredible but true story of the Rochester Lancers. It is available at