Seventeen high school seniors at YSC Academy celebrated the next step in their soccer careers on Tuesday at a College Soccer Signing Day event on the campus near King of Prussia.
The 2019 graduating class includes players who compete for the Philadelphia Union Academy and FC Delco in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy and train and play for Bethlehem Steel in the USL Championship.
“It was just a great day as the year is winding down to recognize that everyone is going on to a bright future,” said Delran, N.J. native MD Myers, who is headed to High Point University. “It’s also just really crazy that we are all heading off to our next chapter because most of the guys are guys that I’ve played with for a number of years now.”
Several family members were on hand to mark the occasion including Sean Smolyn’s two older brothers, Kevin and CJ, who he will join at Saint Francis PA this fall. The parents of Jackson Temple and Tonny Temple had to change their red shirts from Rutgers to NC State to pose for photos with their two sons.
Ryan Becher, who joined the academy and started attending the school last fall, will be joining his older brother Jackson Becher at UMBC this fall.
“Even though we’ve only been around it for the year it’s been fun to be part of it and watch these kids play at the level they’re at and see so many of them going on to high level institutions,” Ryan’s dad (and former Harrisburg City Islanders head coach) Bill Becher said. “For us it’s really exciting that Ryan will be joining his brother at UMBC. He had quite a few choices and opportunities but at the end of the day he liked their program there and the coaches and it’s a chance to play with his brother again who he’s played with his whole life.”
While most of the teammates and classmates will head off to different schools, JD Wagner and Cole Turner will be reporting to the Naval Academy this summer for the intensive seven-week military training program known as Plebe Summer.
Turner is one of a handful of players in the group who have already been exposed to pro soccer playing as amateurs in the USL Championship with the Steel.
Tomas Romero, who is part of the recruiting class at Georgetown, has 10 appearances for the Steel under his belt while Turner has seven appearances this season, Tonny Temple made seven appearances last season and Michael Pellegrino has had two regular season appearances. Kris Shakes has been a regular in the 18 for the Steel and at training while Wagner and Nick Blacklock have appeared in preseason games.
The graduating class includes Brenden Aaronson and Ben Ofeimu, who have already signed pro contracts, along with Nathan Harriel, Axel Picazo, Kemali Green and Antek Sankiel, whose post-graduation plans are still to be determined.
Six players in the group will be the first in their family to attend college.
2019 YSC Academy Signing Day
|Ryan Becher||D/MF||Hummelstown||Pennsylvania||UMBC||Philadelphia Union|
|Marco Bla||MF||Philadelphia||Pennsylvania||Old Dominion||FC Delco/Philadelphia Union|
|Nick Blacklock||MF||Hellertown||Pennsylvania||Virginia Tech||Philadelphia Union|
|Liam Cummings||GK||Morrisville||Pennsylvania||Temple||Philadelphia Union|
|Eoin Gawronski||GK||Limerick||Pennsylvania||Temple||FC Delco/Philadelphia Union|
|Tyler Kaplan||MF||Center Valley||Pennsylvania||Ithaca||FC Delco|
|Brady McSwain||GK||West Chester||Pennsylvania||Cornell||Philadelphia Union|
|MD Myers||F||Delran||New Jersey||High Point||Philadelphia Union|
|Michael Pellegrino||MF||Wenonah||New Jersey||Notre Dame||Philadelphia Union|
|Tomas Romero||GK||Cherry Hill||New Jersey||Georgetown||Philadelphia Union|
|Kris Shakes||GK||Coral Springs||Florida||Penn State||Philadelphia Union|
|Sean Smolyn||D||Holland||Pennsylvania||Saint Francis||FC Delco/Philadelphia Union|
|Jackson Temple||MF||Millville||Pennsylvania||Rutgers||Philadelphia Union|
|Tonny Temple||F||Millville||Pennsylvania||NC State||Philadelphia Union|
|Cole Turner||MF||Churchville||Maryland||Naval Academy||Philadelphia Union|
|JD Wagner||D||Medford Lakes||New Jersey||Naval Academy||Philadelphia Union|
|Daniel Yallah||D||Philadelphia||Pennsylvania||Harcum College||FC Delco|