New England Soccer Today

UConn’s Larin Taken With Top Pick


As expected, University of Connecticut star Cyle Larin was selected with the first overall pick by expansion side Orlando City SC at Thursday’s MLS SuperDraft in Philadelphia.

Larin, who signed a Generation adidas deal ahead of the draft, was not present at Thursday’s proceedings due to Canadian National Team obligations.

“We believe that we’ve picked the best player in the draft,” said Orlando City Head Coach Adrian Heath said in a club release. “Cyle has incredible potential, and we’re looking forward to working with him.”

Larin scored a team-high nine goals for the Huskies in 2014, three of which were game-winners, and was named the American Athletic Conference Offensive Player of the Year. In two seasons at Storrs, he collected 23 goals and six assists.

The 19-year-old striker was the second straight UConn product taken with the top pick. Last year, goalkeeper Andre Blake was selected by the Philadelphia Union at number 1. It marked the first time in MLS history that a school produced back-to-back top picks.

“With Cyle going No. 1, we have now had a very high pick in each of the last three drafts,” UConn men’s soccer head coach Ray Reid told the school’s official website on Thursday. “It’s a testament to our program, and it really says something about the kind of players we’ve attracted to come play at UConn and their commitment to the game.”

Larin’s Huskie teammate, center back Sergio Campbell, was selected by the Columbus Crew in the first round with the 19th overall pick. The 22-year-old defender started all 23 matches for the school in 2014, and put together an impressive showing at the MLS Combine according to draft pundits.

The remaining New England college players on the draft board – Dominique Badji (Boston University), Fabio Machado (Providence), and Adria Beso Marco (UConn) – will be available for selection during the third and fourth rounds of the SuperDraft, which will take place on Tuesday via teleconference.

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