Monthly Archives: April 2016
Lane United FC is thrilled to announce the signing of four new players from Creighton University. Defender Akeem Ward, defender/midfielder Mitch LaGro, midfielder Joel Rydstrand, and forward Ricky Lopez-Espin will join the Reds for the 2016 PDL season.
Akeem Ward recently transferred to Creighton from Hastings University. He featured in a spring exhibition game with Creighton against the USL club, Swope Park Rangers. During his freshman season at Hastings, Ward started in 20 games and earned two goals and five assists for the season. Ward attended Shattuck Saint Mary’s college preparatory school where he played for their US Development Academy soccer team.
Mitch LaGro is coming off his freshman season at Creighton University where he played in eleven games for the Bluejays. Prior to his college career, LaGro played for the US Development Academy club, Solar Chelsea FC. During his three seasons with the club, Solar Chelsea earned a place in the USSF playoffs and the Dallas Cup semifinals every year.
Freshman midfielder Joel Rystrand was a breakout star during the Bluejays’ 2015 season. Rydstrand was named to the All-Big East Freshman Team for his outstanding freshman season playing in 23 games, scoring three goals, and earning two assists for the Bluejays. A native of Almunge, Sweden, Rystrand played for the IK Sirius Academy and attended a 22 player camp with the Swedish National Team.
Ricky Lopez-Espin saw a lot of playing time during his sophomore season at Creighton. He played in 23 games, scoring five goals and earning one assist for the season. Like Ward, Ricky played for Shattuck Saint Mary’s where he led the USSDA in goals for the 2013 season with 21. Ricky was also invited to participate in a US Men’s National Team U-20 camp.
“For us to bring in these quality players from arguably one of the top men’s college programs in the country is a massive step forward in our ability to recruit nationwide. All four of these players bring a competitive edge, a winning culture in the locker room and sheer quality to the field. They have great character, a professional approach to the game and will no doubt be fan favorites this upcoming season.”
Two Post University players have signed on with Lane United for the 2016 PDL season. Midfielder Armando Filho will join Lane United for the third consecutive season and center back Stefan Tomasevic will play his first season with the Reds.
After being plagued by an injury during Lane United’s 2015 season, Armando Filho was one of Post’s top players during the fall 2015 season, earning second team All Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference honors. Filho played in 17 of the Eagles’ games during his sophomore season, scoring one goal and earning three assists. Originally from Cataguases, Brazil, Filho was a member of the Lane United roster during the 2014 and 2015 seasons. His experience and leadership qualities will provide a valuable asset to his team both on and off the field. “Armando will bring his infectious personality, great character, professionalism, and quality to us again this year. He is a player who understands our culture as a club, and he has that rare ability to make players around him better.” said Coach John Galas.
Stefan Tomasevic just completed his sophomore season at Post University where he started in 20 games and netted six goals for the season. Tomasevic helped his team win the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference Division II championship with a goal in the 73rd minute of the final. A London, England native, Tomasevic will join Lane United for the first time this season as a center back. When asked about Tomasevic, Galas said, “Stefan has been working extremely hard this past year. His physical stature and fitness level, combined with his aerial presence will certainly help us shore things up in the back, but also provide us a threat on all set pieces.”
“Both Stefan and Armando have done an exceptional job at Post University under coach Haley. I am delighted to bring in these two young men this summer and help them prepare for yet another successful fall campaign” said Galas.
As the season gets closer, Lane United FC is excited to announce three more signings for the 2016 roster. Ben Willis, of Gonzaga University, and Dirk van der Velde and Matthew Coffey of the University of Portland will join LUFC for the upcoming PDL season.
Ben Willis started six games in goal his freshman year at Gonzaga University, earning a total of 18 saves during the season. He saw less playing time his sophomore year as fellow LUFC goalkeeper, Chris Lowrimore was featured heavily in the Bulldogs’ 2015 season. Willis hails from Federal Way, Washington where he played for his local high school and later for the Seattle Sounders U18 Academy. When asked about Willis, Coach John Galas said, “Ben is a quality keeper who will compete for playing time immediately. Having spent time with the Sounders youth academy and Gonzaga University he’ll bring a great level of professionalism and talent to the position. He continues our goalkeeper pipeline from Gonzaga and we are thrilled he will be with us this summer. He has been working extremely hard this spring with his Goalkeeping Coach Vito Higgins at GU and we expect him to be in top form when he arrives in early May.”
Entering his senior year at the University of Portland, Dirk van der Velde has featured heavily in the Pilots’ spring season. Van der Velde has played in two competitive matches against the Chicago Fire and Portland Timbers T2 this spring. Dirk joins Lane United FC for the third consecutive year. “I’m excited to welcome Dirk back to Lane United for his third season. He understands our system and club culture well, and will be an instrumental part of our 2016 team” said Coach John Galas.
Matthew Coffey recently finished his junior season at the University of Portland. After missing most of the 2014 season due to an injury, Coffey was a strong presence in the Pilots’ midfield in the 2015 season, starting 12 games and earning one goal and two assists. Coffey played for Brighton High School in his hometown of Sandy, Utah where he was named Utah State Gatorade Player of the Year and Mr. Soccer for the state of Utah in 2013. Coffey also played for club team, Inter FC where he helped his team win five state championships. “Matt comes to Lane United FC with great club and college pedigree. He has a had tremendous amount of success at the club level and will bring a winning mentality to this team” said Galas.
“We continue to scout the WCC in hopes of bringing in quality players from this conference each year. All three of these players fit our club culture, values and playing style. They will immediately compete for playing time in their respective positions.”
Stay tuned for more roster signings and season info over the next two weeks.
Lane United FC is excited to announce that five members of the Oregon State Men’s Soccer team have signed with Lane United FC for the 2016 PDL season. Matt Arbogast and Rolando Velazquez will return to Lane United for a second season with the Reds. Zach Dickey, Nathan Braaten, and Sam Tweeton will join Lane United for the first time this season.
Matt Arbogast recently completed his junior season at Oregon State where he earned Pac-12 Academic Honorable Mention for his efforts on the field and in the classroom. He started in 11 of the Beavers’ games, and played in 14 games total. Arbogast is a Eugene native who graduated from South Eugene High School where he led the team with 13 goals and 10 assists in a season. “I’m excited Matt is returning home this summer to play for Lane United FC once again. Having yet another quality player developed here in Eugene is a tremendous asset to our program. Unfortunately Matt has been plagued by the injury bug in each of his two previous seasons with us, so we are hoping he can remain healthy all summer in preparation for his senior year at OSU in the fall. It will be nice to have him playing in front of his home crowd this summer.”
Rolando Velazquez recently finished his sophomore season at Oregon State. Rolando was unfortunately injured the majority of his sophomore campaign. Rolando returns to Lane United for his third season. Best known for assisting on Lane United FC’s first ever goal, Rolando brings an exciting possession style and attacking mindset to Lane United this summer. A Junction City native, Velazquez played for Junction City High School where he was named First Team All-League and Most Valuable Player. “Much like Matt, Rolando suffered from injury last summer which really limited his time with us. I am thrilled he is healthy and returning to us this summer.”
Zach Dickey joined Oregon State in the winter of 2016. The freshman goalkeeper will feature for OSU in the fall 2016 season and for Lane United in the 2016 PDL season. Dickey is a native of Frisco, Texas where he played with the Dallas Texans and US Soccer Development Academy club, Solar Chelsea SC. At six-foot-five, Zach’s height will provide him with a key physical advantage in the goal for Lane United. “We’re excited to welcome Zach here this summer. He comes highly recommended by Coach Simmons at Oregon State. Although Zach will head back to Texas in late June, I’m thrilled to have him here with this group. He will provide us tremendous competition at this position.”
Nathan Braaten played in 18 games as part of Oregon State’s program during his freshman season in 2015. Originally from Highlands Ranch, Colorado, Braaten played club soccer for the Colorado Rapids. He also played for Real Colorado where he served as a team captain from 2010 to 2012 and helped his team win multiple league championships. “Nathan will be an exciting addition to this year’s team. He comes from a great club program and has gained invaluable experience this past fall season at OSU. He will be another welcomed addition to this year’s team.”
Sam Tweeton started in 17 games for Oregon State during his sophomore season in 2015. His work in the Beavers’ defense helped the Beavers record six clean sheets and earned him an assist against UCLA on October 2nd. A Fort Collins, Colorado native, Tweeton played club soccer for Real Colorado where he earned All-Conference XI and was team captain. “Having someone of Sam’s ability join our back line this summer will certainly help. Sam is a technical, physical, battle tested CB. His club playing experience, along with his PAC-12 experience has made him one of the top defenders in the PAC-12, I’m exited to have the opportunity to work with him this summer.”
“I’m delighted to welcome these five players from Oregon State. Coach Simmons has done a tremendous job with that program, and it is reflected in the quality of players he brings in year in and year out. These players will certainly help us in competing for the league tittle, and it will be a privilege to work with them this year.”
Stay tuned for more information on roster signings and the upcoming 2016 season!
Lane United FC is thrilled to announce the first round of signings to our 2016 Roster. Local players Daley Stevens, Aidan Johnson, and Casey ChubbFertal will join the Reds for the 2016 PDL season. LUFC fans will recognize Stevens and ChubbFertal as they were members of the 2015 roster and Stevens has been with the club since 2014. Newcomer Aidan Johnson was born and raised in Eugene and currently attends college in California.
Midfielder Daley Stevens is a Eugene native who has been involved with LUFC since 2014, featuring prominently in the documentary film series First Touch about Lane United’s inaugural season. He recently graduated from the University of Oregon where he played for and coached the Men’s Club Soccer Team. Daley also coaches youth soccer with Eugene Timbers Fútbol Club. Coach John Galas said, “Daley is an exciting, versatile player that can play in a variety of positions for us. He’ll provide us with great leadership this year as he is entering his 3rd season with us. He understands our system and style well and we are thrilled to have him back this campaign.”
After a highly successful season with the University of Redlands, midfielder Casey ChubbFertal joins LUFC for a second straight year. Chubbfertal was a standout player in the Bulldogs’ 2015 season, earning him Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) First-Team honors as well as National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-West Region second-team honors. “Much like Daley, Casey can play in a variety of positions for us this year. He had a remarkable fall season with Redlands, and we are very much looking forward to welcoming him back this season. He is a tremendous athlete that will really push for playing time this year” said Galas.
Midfielder Aidan Johnson completed his freshman year at Claremont McKenna College where he featured in 17 games and scored three goals. Johnson played for South Eugene High School where he was known for his dedication and love of the game. Galas said, “I’m delighted to have Aidan with us this season. Last year he trained with the team when he was available and did a fantastic job. Having a college season under his belt now, I’m excited to see how he has developed and what he can do for us this season”
When asked about Lane United’s first three signings Coach Galas said, “Having these local players come back to play PDL is a credit to the local youth clubs here in Eugene who have developed them. As a small market club, having the ability to rely on quality homegrown players is paramount to our growth and overall success as a club. Our objective is always to keep the best local players coming back to Eugene to play PDL each and every year, and these three players will no doubt do a fantastic job in representing this club this summer.”