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Soccer Spotlight:
KiXX Select Six in 2005 MISL College Draft
Club Acquires Three Local Products Including Temple-Standout Pat Hannigan

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

By David Deal
Philadelphia KiXX Director of Communitions

Philadelphia KiXX Executive Vice President/General Manager Greg Bibb announced today the acquisition of six players, including the club’s first selection Philadelphia native Pat Hannigan, in the 2005 Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL) College Draft. The team also acquired the rights to Chestnut Hill Academy product Dan Gargan and Northeast Catholic graduate Steve Wacker.

All seven active teams, as well as the expansion California Cougars, participated in the draft, with order of selection based on each team’s won-lost percentage from their last completed regular season. The draft consisted of one Territorial Round and four standard Numerical Rounds. In the Territorial Round, teams selected a player who was either born or attended college in the team’s home state. California, who is scheduled to debut in 2005-06, selected first in each round, while the Chicago Storm, who made their debut this season, selected second. The St. Louis Steamers, Cleveland Force, Kansas City Comets, Philadelphia KiXX, Baltimore Blast, and the Milwaukee Wave rounded out the draft order. Cleveland also received the third selection in each Numerical Round via a trade with the now-inactive Monterrey club.

The complete round-by-round breakdown of the KiXX selections is as follows:

Territorial Pat Hannigan
Temple University
One Dan Gargan
Georgetown University
Two Drew McAthy
Three Derek MacKenzie
Duquesne University
Four* Amir Lowery
Wake Forest University
Four Steve Wacker
Temple University

*additional selection acquired via a trade with the Baltimore Blast

Philadelphia kicked-off the draft selecting Hannigan with the seventh pick (seventh overall) of the Territorial Round. The Philadelphia native was a two-time Atlantic-10 Defensive Player of the Year and the Philadelphia Soccer Seven Player of the Year for 2004, in which he posted an 11-7-2 record in goal for Temple University. He made 89 saves for a .817 save percentage, a 1.00 goals against average and posted a Soccer Seven high eight shutouts. For his career, the Frankford High School product compiled 30 wins and 20 shutouts, while posting a 1.41 goals against average and a .798 save percentage. The 6-3 goalkeeper recently became the Owl’s first player to be selected in the Major League Soccer (MLS) draft. Hannigan was selected by the New York/New Jersey MetroStars with the sixth pick of the third round in the league’s February 4 supplement draft.

Gargan, the club’s first round selection (15th overall), is a graduate of Chestnut Hill Academy in Philadelphia, PA. A two-year captain at Georgetown University, Gargan was named to the All-Big East Second Team in 2004 and to the Third Team NSCAA All-South Atlantic Regional squad for the second consecutive year. He was second on the team in scoring his senior season with 15 points off four goals and seven assists. Gargan ranks 17th on the university’s all-time points list with 40.

The KiXX continued their selections by acquiring the rights to Drew McAthy, a graduate of the University of California-Santa Barbara, with the team’s second round (24th overall) selection. A native of Huntington Beach, California, McAthy led the Gauchos to the NCAA Division I championship game, in which he was named the College Cup’s Most Outstanding Offensive Player. The 6-2, 180-pound midfielder registered two goals and an assist in the semifinal win over Duke University and the lone UCSB goal of the championship game versus the Indiana Hoosiers. McAthy, the university’s all-time leading scorer with 53 career goals, was recently selected by the Los Angeles Galaxy with the seventh pick in the second round (19th overall) of the MLS draft.

The club then selected midfielder Derek MacKenzie with the draft’s 33rd overall pick in the third round. MacKenzie, a native of Carnegie, PA, led Duquesne University in scoring his senior season with 16 points on five goals and six assists, en route to earning 2004 All Middle Atlantic Regional First Team honors. He was also named to the Atlantic 10 First Team All-Conference squad and led the Dukes with three game-winning goals. MacKenzie finished his collegiate career as the institution’s all-time assist leader with 28 and is third all-time with 50 points. MacKenzie’s father, Dave, played for 10 seasons, eight with the Pittsburgh Spirit and two with the Baltimore Blast, of the original MISL from 1978 to 1988. Over that span, he amassed 263 points on 90 goals and 173 points in 420 games. He also played one season (1988-89) with the Ft. Wayne Flames of the American Indoor Soccer Association (AISA), where he registered nine points and 11 blocks in 27 appearances.

Philadelphia rounded out their selections with a pair of picks in the fourth and final round in midfielders Amir Lowery and Wacker. Lowery (40th overall), is a native of Washington, DC and a graduate of Wake Forest University. The 6-2, 180-pound midfielder started all 20 games for the Demon Deacons in 2004, registering one goal and three assists for the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) regular-season champions. A two-time All-ACC Second Team selection, Lowery was also selected by the Colorado Rapids with the 45th overall pick in the 2005 MLS SuperDraft. He played for the Carolina Dynamo of the Premier Developmental League (PDL) during the summer of 2004.

Wacker, a Philadelphia native and Temple University product, was recently named the Philadelphia Soccer Seven Academic Player of the Year after his senior season of 2004. A kinesiology major, Wacker owns a 3.89 cumulative grade point average and was previously honored with Academic All-Atlantic 10 and ESPN The Magazine Second Team Academic All-America accolades. The Owls team captain and four-year starter enjoyed his best offensive season of his college career in 2004, tallying two goals and four assists for eight points. Similar to KiXX player/coach Don D’Ambra and all-star defender Pat Morris, Wacker is an alumnus of Northeast Catholic High School.

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