Demon Deacons in the Pros
March 30, 2012
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - The 2012 MLS season is in full gear and several former Wake Forest men's soccer standouts have already made their mark in the new year.
At the end of the 2011 season, Wake Forest had an impressive 20 former players continuing to play soccer professionally around the world. The Demon Deacons have four players continuing their career overseas with Michael Parkhurst and Marcus Tracy currently playing in Denmark. Brian Edwards is on roster in Sweden and Justin Moose is also playing in Thailand. Additionally, there are 10 Deacs on roster in the MLS and another on trial.
In early MLS action, Sam Cronin and James Riley have both stood out. Cronin, in the San Jose midfield, is off to a fast-paced start with assists in two of the side's first three matches and earned a nod to the MLS Team of the Week on Tuesday, March 27.
Riley, now with Chivas USA, has started and played the full 90 in all three of his first matches and was an honorable mention on the Team of the Week with Cronin.
Brian Carroll has also started in all three of the Union's games so far in 2012, logging 259 minutes in his 10th professional season. One of the best holding midfielders in the league, Carroll has made the playoffs in all nine of his seasons in MLS.
In New York, Stephen Keel has started and played the full 90 in two matches for the Red Bulls' backline.
After a strong preseason, Michael Lahoud has been sidelined by a left hamstring for Chivas USA, but is targeting a return to the starting lineup on Sunday against Sporting Kansas City. MLSSoccer.com recently profiled his charity, Schools for Salone, which is focused on raising money for schools in his native Sierra Leone.
Out in Colorado, Wells Thompson has played in all three of the Rapids' first three tilts, starting one and registering a shot in 103 minutes of run.
Jeremiah White made his official return to MLS with the New England Revolution on Saturday, March 24 after signing as a free agent on March 9. White's journey to the Revs was chronicled by MLSSoccer.com.
Ike Opara has yet to appear in a match for the Quakes after missing the season's first week with the U.S. U-23 Olympic Team, but is healthy and ready to contribute after missing much of his first two years in the league with injury. ESPN profiled the former Wake Forest defender's return from two foot fractures.
In reserve action, Corben Bone scored on a ninth minute volley in a 1-0 win over Real Salt Lake in a match on Tuesday, March 27.