MLS SuperDraft 2013: Impact Select Blake Smith, Fernando Monge, Paolo DelPiccolo and Brad Stuver

IMPACT SELECTS FOUR PLAYERS AT 2013 MLS SUPERDRAFT
INDIANAPOLIS – The Montreal Impact selected four players on Thursday, at the 2013 MLS SuperDraft, at the Indianapolis Convention Center, in Indiana.

The Impact selected midfielder Blake Smith (University of New Mexico) as its first pick (8th overall), as well as midfielder Fernando Monge (UCLA) in 18th spot, second rounders Paolo DelPiccolo, midfielder (Louisville) in 27th spot and goalkeeper Brad Stuver, in 32nd.

“We are very pleased with the selections we made today,” said Impact sporting director Nick De Santis. “We wanted to improve in certain positions and these players fit within our system well. It’s now up to them to prove what they can do and earn a spot with the team.”

Smith, who turns 22 today, was named a first team all-star in the NSCAA Far West All-Region and a first team all-star in the All-Mountain Pacific Sports Federation in 2012 following a season of three goals and 13 assists in 21 matches for the University of New Mexico Lobos. His 13 assists were amongst the best in the country and placed him second all-time in team history for assists in a season. In four seasons with the Lobos, he started 53 of 68 appearances, scoring 13 goals and adding 19 assists.

“We’ve been following this player for a while now. He is very good as an outside midfielder, who has a good service in the box,” said Impact director of soccer operations Matt Jordan. “He has good speed and is capable to vary his play. We are very happy to add him to our roster.”

Monge, 22, was named a second team all-star in the NSCAA All-Far West and a first team all-star in the All-Pac 12 in 2012 following five goals and one assist in 19 games for the Bruins. He finished his University career with nine goals and four assist in 67 games, including 54 starts. He also played with the Seattle Sounders U-23 team in 2012, in the Premier Development League.

DelPiccolo, 21, is currently on trial with Eintracht Frankfurt of the German Bundesliga, but his MLS rights belong to the Impact. He started 66 games for the Cardinals, scoring five goals and adding 17 assists in three seasons. He earned third team All-BIG EAST honours in 2010 and was named to the BIG EAST All-rookie team in 2009.

Stuver, 21, was a second Team All-Horizon League selection in 2011, finishing the year with a 9-8-1 record and 66 saves in his 18 starts between the posts, recording five shutouts, tied for third most in the league. In 2010, he earned a spot on the all-league first team and was tabbed the Horizon League Goalkeeper of the Year and selected third team All-Great Lakes Region. Stuver concluded his career ranked first in the CSU career record book in minutes played (6,397), second in games played (71) and games started by a goalkeeper (67) and third in goals against average (1.13), saves (292) and shutouts (9).

BLAKE SMITH
Position: Midfielder
Height: 5’10
Weight: 150 lbs.
Birthdate: January17, 1991, El Paso, Texas, US
Residence: Boerne, Texas, US
Former club: New Mexico (NCAA)
Acquired: January 17, 2012 (SuperDraft, 1st round, 8th selection)

FERNANDO MONGE
Position: Midfielder
Height: 5’10
Weight: 165 lbs.
Birthdate: March 11, 1990, San Diego, California, USA
Place of residence: Seattle, Washington, USA
Former club : UCLA (NCAA)
Acquired: January 17, 2013 (SuperDraft, 1st round, 18th overall)

PAOLO DELPICCOLO
Position: Midfielder
Height: 6′
Weight: 165 lbs.
Birthdate: May 28, 1991, Wheat Ridge, Colorado, USA
Place of residence: Los Angeles, California
Former club: UCLA (NCAA)
Acquired: January 17, 2013 (SuperDraft, 2nd round, 27th overall)

BRAD STUVER
Position: Goalkeeper
Height: 6’3″
Weight: 180 lbs.
Birthdate: April 16, 1991, Mayfield, Ohio, USA
Place of residence: Twinsburg Ohio
Former club: Cleveland State University (NCAA)
Acquired: January 17, 2013 (SuperDraft, 2nd round, 32nd overall)