Mason Trafford Retires, Joins Cavalry Front Office
Cavalry Captain Mason Trafford has announced the end of a fourteen-year playing career, though he’ll remain with the club in a front office role.
The 36-year-old veteran defender will transition to a full-time front office position as the club’s Commercial Director, a role he had already been dedicating time to at the tail end of his time on the pitch.
The transition sees him call curtains on a fourteen-year playing career that saw him feature for Cavalry since the club’s inception, with Trafford making 77 appearances for the club since 2019.
He was handed the captain’s armband last season following the retirement of Nik Ledgerwood, who remains with the club as Tommy Wheeldon Jr.’s assistant coach.
“Mason is a fantastic human being that has been a key fabric of our club identity from day one. What teammates, management, and supporters will have seen on the pitch is his commitment, intelligence, and leadership,” said Tommy on the retiree. “It’s these traits that will serve him and our club well as he steps into a new and exciting chapter as he helps us grow further as a club”.
Cavalry has built a strong reputation for transitioning its players into the next steps of their careers in-house: beyond Mason and Ledgerwood, the club has helped Mauro Eustaquio and Oliver Minatel with similar moves.
Trafford’s own journey towards a front office role began during the shortened pandemic season in 2020, with his off-the pitch duties increasing in 2021 and 2022. As Commercial Director, he’s already helped the team form relationships with sponsorships as the team carves out a sustainable marketing and sales strategy.
“For 14 years, I’ve lived out my childhood dream,” adds Trafford. “Soccer has shaped me and made me into the person I am today. My life, since I was four years old, has been spent on a soccer field. I’m going to miss it. But I’m also ready for the next chapter, and my new role as Commercial Director of Cavalry FC.”
“The biggest emotion in all of this is gratitude. I’m grateful for my family, my teammates throughout the years, all the staff I’ve been lucky enough to work with, and the fans. It’s been an amazing journey. Thank you to Tommy Wheeldon Jr, our President and COO, Ian Allison, and our ownership. This club brought me to Calgary – now my home – and from day one, put a long-term plan in place that sees me leave the pitch and enter the front office in a role I’m passionate about. Soccer has given me so much in my life. My first love. Thank you to everyone who supported me over the years, that will stay with me forever.”
Trafford’s playing career began with the Vancouver Whitecaps back in their USL era, with the athlete being used in several positions over the next two seasons. He then moved on to the Real Maryland Monarchs before testing himself overseas, featuring in every possible match for IFK Mariehamn in Finland before a stint with Guizhou Zhicheng preceded a return home to Canada with the Ottawa Fury.
Trafford once again completed an iron campaign, picking up a Supporters’ Player of the Year in the nation’s capital before featuring as a left-back the following season. He earned the supporters’ award once more before moving on to Miami FC, where he departed as the Fury’s all-time appearance leader at the time. He remained in Florida until Cavalry FC secured his return to Canada in 2019.
The rest, as they say, is history – but for the veteran defender, the next chapter is only beginning.