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The ultimate guide to sports teams in Charleston

From the RiverDogs to the Stingrays, we’re sharing all details of Charleston’s sports teams.


Can’t beat a sunset over The Joe. | Photo by CHStoday

Photo by CHStoday

Whether you’re a sports fanatic — or just look good in The Citadel’s infantry blue — when it comes to sports, Charleston has no shortage of teams to support.

In this guide, we’ve rounded up everything you need to know about local sports teams, so whether you’re already a devoted RiverDogs fan or you’re new to the area, we hope this can serve as a valuable resource.

RiverDogs win their first-ever title

The RiverDogs were crowned the Low-A East Champions in 2021.| Photo by Brian Principe Photography

Charleston RiverDogs (MiLB) | Est. 1980

The RiverDogs were originally founded as the Charleston Royals (1980-1984) and also went by the moniker of the Charleston Rainbows from 1985-1993. In 1994, the team officially became the RiverDogs. The team is currently affiliated with the Tampa Bay Rays and is part of the Carolina League along with the Columbia Fireflies, Myrtle Beach Pelicans, Augusta GreenJackets, and more. Read up on RiverDogs history.

Where they play: Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park

  • Max. capacity of 6,000
  • The stadium is named after Joseph P. Riley Jr., Charleston’s longest-serving mayor.

Mascot: Charlie T. RiverDog

  • Introduced in 1994
  • Follow Charlie on Instagram to stay up-to-date on his whereabouts and happenings.

Team colors: Navy blue, gold, and white

  • The RiverDogs’ logo depicts a scruffy gold dog biting a baseball bat in half. The logo has gone through two modifications over the years.
  • Shop for merch

Major accomplishments:

  • Southern Division Champions in 1980 and 1988
  • After 15+ years, reclaimed the Southern Division Champion title in 2005, and again in 2008
  • Back-to-back Southern Division Champion titles in 2021 and 2022: Carolina League Champions in 2022, and Low-A East Champions in 2021

📅 See the team’s 2023 schedule.


The Stingrays headed to compete for the Kelly Cup in June 2021. | Photo by @scstingrayshockey

🏒 South Carolina Stingrays (ECHL) | Est. 1993

The Stingrays were SC’s first professional minor league ice hockey team and the oldest continuously operational ECHL franchise to remain in its founding city. During the team’s first season, they averaged ~9,100 fans each game. Currently, the team is affiliated with the NHL’s Washington Capitols.

Where they play: North Charleston Coliseum

  • Max. capacity of 13,000
  • Since opening in 1993, the coliseum has hosted musical performances by N’SYNC, Shania Twain, Kings of Leon, John Mayer, Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, Taylor Swift, and more.

Mascot: Cool Ray

  • Made his mascot debut in October 1993
  • His favorite food is fried pickles
  • Submit a request for Cool Ray to visit your upcoming event.

Team colors: Navy blue, red, white, and silver

Major accomplishments:

  • Three-time Kelly Cup/Riley Cup champs (1996-1997, 2000-2001, and 2008-2009)
  • Finished the 1996-1997 season with the best record in the ECHL
  • 30 former Stingrays have gone on to play in the NHL

📅 See the team’s schedule.

Charleston Battery

Photo by CHStoday

Charleston Battery (USLC) | Est. 1993

The Battery is one of the country’s oldest continuously operating professional soccer clubs. Since the team’s inception, it has been recognized as one of the most successful lower-division soccer clubs, having won multiple championship titles. Michael Anhaeuser was the Battery’s head coach from 2004-2021, and the current head coach is 2022 USL Championship Coach of the Year Ben Pirmann.

Where they play: Patriots Point

  • Capacity is 3,900 (expandable to ~5,000)
  • Situated just over the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge in Mount Pleasant

Team colors: Yellow, black, and red

Major accomplishments:

  • USISL Pro League champions in 1996
  • USL-A League champions in 2003
  • USL-2 champions in 2010
  • USL Pro champions in 2012
  • Southern Derby champions in 2003, 2005, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2020

📅 See the team’s 2023 schedule.

🏈 College of Charleston Cougars men’s basketball (NCAA) | Est. 1898

College of Charleston’s men’s basketball team has been NCAA Division I since 1991. In the team’s history, there have been several head coaches, with John Kresse (1979-2002) being the longest-running. Pat Kelsey is currently the team’s head coach.

Where they play: TD Arena

  • Max. capacity of 5,100
  • Opened in November 2008

Mascot: Clyde the Cougar

  • Follow Clyde on Instagram to stay up-to-date on his whereabouts and happenings.
  • The College of Charleston joked that it would change the school’s mascot to the Blue Crabs on April Fool’s Day in 2017.

Team colors: Maroon, white, and gold

  • The college’s primary logo features a capital “C” with “Charleston” written across.
  • Shop for merch

Major accomplishments:

  • Conference tournament champions in 1964, 1997, 1998, 1999, and 2018
  • Conference regular season champions in 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2003, 2011, 2018, and 2023
  • NAIA Championship winner in 1983

📅 See the team’s schedule.


The Johnson Hagood Stadium also hosts high school football games for Burke High School. | Photo by Ianmccor via Wiki Commons

🏈 The Citadel Bulldogs Football (NCAA) | Est. 1905

Brent Thompson served as the team’s head coach from 2016-2022, and Maurice Drayton will begin his first season as head coach this year. The Bulldogs’ biggest rivalries are with the Virginia Military Institute Keydets and the Furman University Paladins.

Where they play: Johnson Hagood Stadium

  • Opened in October 1948
  • Max. capacity of ~11,300
  • Fundraising is underway to support the reconstruction of the stadium’s East Side Stands.

Mascot: Spike T. Bulldog

Team colors: Infantry blue, flag blue, and dress white

Major accomplishments:

  • SoCon champs in 1961, 1992, 2015, and 2016
  • Winner of the Tangerine Bowl in 1960
  • 14 former Citadel players have been drafted in the NFL.

📅 Sneak peek of the team’s upcoming season.

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