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Impact snatches two Canadians in Supplemental Draft

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The MLS supplemental draft is the day when general managers roll the dice. The wide majority of these prospects will show up at the camps of the various MLS teams who selected them, and then be cut.

With the elimination of the third and fourth rounds of the MLS SuperDraft, the Supplemental Draft, in the interim, takes on a little more meaning — until academies are producing prospects full-bore.

Of the Canadian teams, Montreal made the biggest splash Tuesday, selecting two Canadians out of the four picks it made.

The biggest buzz came when the Impact selected Mississauga native Evan James with the first pick of the Supplemental Draft. James played at UNC Charlotte last season, scoring five times and adding seven assists.

“It’s a great feeling to come back to Canada, to show that we have talent,” said James in a release issued by the Impact. “I hope to bring a lot of excitement and pace when going towards goal, create chances and hopefully score some goals.”

“Evan is a young Canadian player who we followed in college and who we felt did well in the Combine,” said Impact head coach Jesse Marsch. “We had him rated higher than a third round pick and are very happy to add him to the group and help move him along.”

After the Impact took East Tennessee State University defender Aaron Schoenfeld and Colgate striker Steven Miller, it selected Canadian striker Carl Haworth, who played at Niagara University in 2011.

Carl Haworth

Haworth had more impressive numbers than James, with 12 goals and eight assists in just 17 games. But the Barrie, Ont. native did it at a smaller school.

The Impact has just two Canadians — Patrice Bernier and Greg Sutton — inked to its roster. So, the addition of the two draftees — as well as five Canadian passport holders who were with the club in NASL last season and have been invited to MLS camp — give Marsch a decent range of Canadians to choose from so he can fill and, hopefully, exceed his team’s roster requirement.

Toronto FC hasn’t guaranteed that any of the five players it selected will actually be at camp with the club. None of the players are Canadian.

“We made the five selections today thinking about depth in certain positions and what may be required this season,” said Toronto FC Director of Team and Player Operations Earl Cochrane in a release. “The players impressed our coaching staff during the NCAA season and at the combine. We will be speaking with the players ahead of training camp to determine the best option for both sides.”

Midfielder Michael Green scored 11 times over four seasons at the University of New Mexico, and enters a crowded midfield picture at TFC.

Defender Nickardo Blake played in every game for the University of Connecticut.

Defender Mykell Bates, from Santa Clara, was named to the NSCAA All-Far West Region Third Team in 2011.

Arthur Ivo scored 24 times in 71 games for Southern Methodist University.

Michael Mazzullo is a holding midfielder from Columbia University.

Of course (insert sarcasm here) all of these prospects were better choices than any of the top Canadian university players in our country.

The Vancouver Whitecaps selected four players; defender Gienir Garcia, from Mexica giant Cruz Azul’s youth wing. Defender Greg Klazura (Notre Dame) and goalkeeper Andrew Fontein (University of California-Irvine) rounded out the Whitecaps’ draft. Klazura was a two-time academic all-star and was a regular at left back for the Irish. In the final round, the Caps took Penn State’s Mark Fetrow, a six-foot-five defender.

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