Two national team appearances, two goals.
Dom Dwyer’s ability to score has always made him a premier player in America, regardless if he was playing in MLS, for a junior college in Texas or for USF.
However, his June call-up to the U.S. Men’s National Team and ensuing two goals in his first two appearances had even some of his old USF teammates surprised.
“I never thought that Dom would be playing for the U.S. National Team,” said Dwyer’s former USF teammate Wesley Charpie. “I knew Dom was going to go on to have a fantastic career, but playing for the U.S. National Team is a totally different story. The fact that he’s actually done it now and got two goals in two appearances is credit to him.”
Charpie currently plays for the USL side St. Louis FC and led USF in assists in the 2011 season. USF won the Big East regular-season title that year, going undefeated in regular-season conference play and earning an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament.
In that same season, Dwyer went on a tear, scoring 16 goals in 23 matches in his lone season as a Bull, ultimately propelling him to MLS after just one year in Tampa, and, eventually, the U.S. National Team.
“When Dom came in, we knew he was going to help us a lot. His style of play was excellent, and his work rate as a forward was tremendous,” former USF teammate Leston Paul said via a Facebook message. “He was and still is a goal machine, but I never thought that he would reach this far.”
Though his time at USF was short, the school will always be a special place for Dwyer.
“This was the beginning. I loved my time here, every moment,” Dwyer said after training at USF’s Corbett Stadium on Sunday in preparation for tonight’s Gold Cup match against Martinique at Raymond James Stadium.
“It was a tough decision to come out a year early from college,” he said. “I was very tempted to stay another year. It was a lot of fun, but this is a place that brings really, really good memories.”
Dwyer could potentially be the third American to score in each of his first three U.S. Men’s National team matches if he nets a goal in tonight’s tilt with current Group B leader Martinique.
As well as his top-tier play on the field, Dwyer’s character and composure shines bright to those close to him.
“There was always a lot of conversation between Dom and I,” Charpie said. “He was a junior at the time while I was just an incoming freshman. He was really good at making me feel relaxed and comfortable on the ball. He would come up to me before the games and say, do your job, get down the line, get a ball into the box and I’ll be there.”
“I almost in those days just crossed it blindly and it’d find Dom somehow,” Charpie said laughing. “He made me look better than I was.”
Though Dwyer and his USF teammates have been split since he was drafted by Kansas City in 2012, he’s still made it a point to keep in touch with them.
“We’ll tweet at each other a couple of times and stuff like that,” Ben Sweat, a current defender for New York City Football Club said. "He even congratulated me on my first MLS goal a few games ago against the Red Bulls.
"He’s just a natural born goal scorer and you can see that clearly from his success in MLS. He works hard though. You can’t fault him for his work to always get in the box and to go and make that run. He earned everything he has.”
Though his days as a Bull are long gone, Dwyer’s legacy and impact on the program will last forever.
As for his national team legacy, it’s still being written.