Jan. 17, 2013
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Notre Dame's Ryan Finley (F) and Dillon Powers (M) were selected in the first round of Thursday's 2013 Major League Soccer (MLS) SuperDraft. Finley went to the Columbus Crew with the ninth overall selection, while the Colorado Rapids took Powers two picks later.
This is the first time Notre Dame has had two first-round picks in the same MLS SuperDraft.
Notre Dame has produced 14 MLS SuperDraft picks since 2008. Those are the most from any school during that time span. Maryland and Wake Forest are second with 13 selections each. The Fighting Irish have had 21 MLS SuperDraft picks during the 12-year tenure of head coach Bobby Clark.
"We're making it a nice habit of getting players drafted every year," said Clark. "To have two players drafted in the top 11 is a tremendous compliment to both Ryan and Dillon, but also to the Notre Dame program. We are thrilled for both of them and wish them success in their professional careers. Another nice thing is that they've already graduated."
Finley (Lumberton, N.J./Rancocas Valley/Duke) played in all 22 matches this season and ranked second nationally in goals (21) and points (46) en route to earning first team All-America honors from the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA). He also was named a first team Soccer America MVP and was the runner-up for the MAC Hermann Trophy, which is the highest individual award in intercollegiate soccer.
He led the BIG EAST with 12 goals in league play and was tapped as the 2012 BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year. Finley had six game-winning goals, including two golden goals. He scored the golden goal in the title game of the BIG EAST Championship, a 3-2 double-overtime victory over Georgetown. Finley had six multiple-goal games, including one hat trick. His 21 goals rank fifth in Notre Dame history for a single season.
Finley tallied 126 points on 56 goals and 14 assists in 78 career matches at both Duke and Notre Dame. He was named the ACC Offensive Player of the Year in addition to copping third team All-America honors during his sophomore season at Duke.
"I'm very happy for Ryan," Clark said. "I don't think I've had any player who has worked harder at his game to become a professional soccer player. He's always doing extra work. He's always out with a bag of balls. I've never had a forward who has ran off the shoulder of the last defender better than Ryan Finley. I'm very happy for him and I wish him nothing but the very best with the Columbus Crew."
Powers was one of 15 semifinalists for the 2012 MAC Hermann Trophy. He earned first team all-BIG EAST honors this season and was a finalist for the Senior CLASS Award. Powers also was selected to the NSCAA Scholar All-America First Team. He was on the NSCAA Scholar All-America Second Team during his junior season.
The two-time team captain played in 78 matches, including 64 starts, during his Notre Dame career. Powers registered 42 points on 10 goals and 22 assists in a Fighting Irish uniform. He was a three-time all-BIG EAST pick.
"Dillon has been a fantastic four-year player here at Notre Dame," Clark said. "He's been a two-year captain and a fantastic student. He really has done it all. We are obviously sad to see him go, but I think he can be a great fit in Colorado and I think he'll do very well."
Finley and Powers helped Notre Dame post a 17-4-1 record this season. The 17 wins were the most for the Irish since 1988. The Fighting Irish won the program's third BIG EAST Championship title and were the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Championship for the first time ever. Notre Dame fell to eventual national champion Indiana, 2-1 in double-overtime, in the third round of the tournament.
The New England Revolution selected Louisville's Andrew Farrell with the first overall selection in Thursday's draft, which consisted of two rounds and 38 total picks.
Notre Dame All-Time MLS Draft Selections
Dillon Powers (M)
2012 Supplemental Draft
Brendan King (M)
2011 Supplemental Draft
Bilal Duckett (D)
Steven Perry (F)
Michael Thomas (M)
Justin Morrow (D)
Jack Traynor (D)
Joseph Lapira (F)
Nate Norman (M)
Kevin Goldthwaite (M/D)
Chris Sawyer (G)
Justin Detter (M/F)
1999 Supplemental Draft
1997 Supplemental Draft
-- ND --