Crew sign backup goalkeeper for playoffs

Chase Harrison joins Columbus to understudy Andy Gruenebaum

Days after goalkeeper William Hesmer fractured his shoulder in the Crew's season finale, the Columbus Crew announced on Tuesday the signing of goalkeeper Chase Harrison to a short-term contract.

The 26-year-old stopper will remain with the club through the duration of the playoffs and will serve as a backup to Andy Gruenebaum, who is set to start in goal against the Colorado Rapids on Thursday (9 p.m. ET; TV: ESPN2, ESPN Deportes).

Harrison, a graduate of Virginia Tech, was drafted No. 26 overall in the 2006 MLS Suplemental Draft by Real Salt Lake. Though he never saw the field with RSL, he has traveled throughout the lower divisions extensively, most notably appearing for the Harrisburg City Islanders, the Rochester Rhinos and the Portland Timbers.

He was most recently called up by D.C. United to understudy Troy Perkins in DC's league match against Toronto FC on Sept. 9.

Crew starting goalkeeper Hesmer has been ruled out of the 2010 postseason after falling awkwardly in the 85th minute of a 3-1 home win over the Philadelphia Union. He has suffered a fractured glenoid in his right shoulder.