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PDL Standouts Selected In MLS SuperDraft

2014 Most Valuable Player Dzenan Catic leads 29 players selected

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TAMPA, Fla. ,Thursday, January 15, 2015: 2014 PDL Most Valuable Player Dzenan Catic led a contingent of 29 former PDL players who were selected on Thursday in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft

, held in conjunction with the NSCAA Convention in Philadelphia. Catic was selected by the Philadelphia Union, and was joined by numerous former PDL award-winners whose professional careers officially began with their selection.

Catic had a standout season for the Michigan Bucks last summer as he claimed the league’s Golden Boot award with 16 goals in 14 games. The standout forward’s long journey to MLS – which included signing with German club Kaiserslautern out of high school before returning to the United States – culminated with his selection by the Union with the 31st pick of the draft.“I just want to say thanks to the MLS and to the Union,” said an emotional Catic after his selection. “I want to thank Davenport University and the Michigan Bucks, and I can’t wait to get started.”

Catic’s teammate with the Bucks and fellow 2014 PDL All-League selection Zach Steinberger was one of seven former PDL players to be taken in the Top 10, as he was taken with the No. 8 selection by the Houston Dynamo. 2014 All-Eastern Conference Goalkeeper Alex Bono of Reading United, who is currently training with the U.S. Men’s National Team, went with the No. 6 selection to Toronto FC, while former PDL champion Khiry Shelton, who claimed the title in 2013 with the Austin Aztex, was taken with the No. 2 pick by New York City FC.

Reading United led all PDL teams with six former players selected in the first two rounds. Fatai Alashe (San Jose Earthquakes), Bono, Skylar Thomas (Toronto FC), Ignacio Maganto (LA Galaxy), Wesley Charpie (Toronto FC) and Oumar Ballo (Houston Dynamo) will join numerous Reading alumni in the professional ranks this season.

Other notable selections included Matt Polster and Kharlton Belmar, who both made the jump from their new MLS club’s PDL side this past season. Polster is set to join the Chicago Fire, while Belmar was an All-Western Conference selection prior to his selection by the Portland Timbers.

The 2015 MLS SuperDraft concludes on Tuesday with the third and fourth rounds, as more former PDL players learn where they will have the chance to begin their professional careers.


The proven developmental leader in North American soccer's evolving tiered structure, the PDL features 64 teams within four conferences throughout the United States and Canada, including 12 teams affiliated with USL PRO or Major League Soccer clubs. The PDL has proven to be an important stepping-stone for top professionals now playing throughout the world, with 70 percent of all MLS draftees having PDL experience. The PDL season consists of 14 regular season matches for each team, seven home and seven away, and provides elite collegiate players the opportunity to taste a higher level of competition while maintaining their eligibility. In addition to league play, PDL teams compete in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup as well as various exhibitions.