Mid-America Christian Men’s Soccer Inks 10 Standouts to 2022 Signing Class
VSN (admin) Published Sunday, July 31, 2022 – 10:00
OKLAHOMA CITY – After enjoying its most successful season since joining the NAIA in 2008, the Central American Christian men’s soccer program continued to add elite-level talent to its pursuit of an NAIA national championship as that the Evangels were signing 10 players to join the team for the upcoming 2022 season.
Overall, the incoming class consists of six college transfers as well as four players who have competed at international club level.
Adding offensive firepower will be Ridwane Boukraa, a 5-9 junior midfielder who transfers from a powerhouse NJCCAA program to Arizona Western. Last season, Boukraa helped lead the Matadors to the NJCAA Division I National Championship Game as the AWC finished the campaign with a 21-2 record. In the team that averaged 4.3 goals per game, Boukraa finished third on the team with nine goals while providing eight assists for a total of 25 points. During his three-year career with Matadors, Boukraa scored a total of 22 goals to go along with 21 assists.
“We are very excited to bring Ridwane to MACU,” said the MACU men’s soccer head coach Danny Frid. “He has proven himself in college football by leading his team to the NJCAA National Finals while becoming an All-American along the way.”
One of four international club prospects who expects to make a big impact on the front line, Georges Westerlund heads to MACU after taking on some of the best talent from his home country of Finland. The 5-10 Helsinki striker arrives at MACU after competing for SJK Seinajoki FC. Back in his time competing at international level, Westerlund was a proven elite striker, even scoring nine goals in the 2019-20 season for his former club SJK Akatemia.
“Georg has a very high level training, which is a big plus for our program,” Frid said. “He is a proven goalscorer who works extremely hard with the ball. We are delighted to work with him.”
Another club star who is expected to turn heads is a 6-0 midfielder from Benasaguil, Spain, Diego Real joins the Evangels team after a brilliant playing career in his home country. Before coming to MACU, Real competed for FC Villarreal C as well as the Villarreal U19 club.
“Diego comes from a high level in Spain,” Frid pointed out. “His ability on the ball will help us with the way we want to play. We are very happy to have him on board and look forward to working with him.”
By strengthening the bottom line, Ricardo Sepulveda is one of two transfers from Barton Community College who will be looking to make an immediate impact. The 6-0 Chile defender is a solid competitor who can make contributions both offensively and defensively as he has scored five goals and five assists in three seasons for the Cougars.
“Ricky joined us in January of this year and has tons of quality,” Frid said. “He is a tough-nosed defender who will continue to develop on the ball with us. We couldn’t be more excited to have him with us here at MACU.”
By joining his Barton College teammate, Cedric Morales Sampson will also look to add quality depth to the Evangels’ midfield. The 5-10 Mexico City, Mexico, managed to score four goals and score five hundred during his three-year career with the Cougars.
“Cédric is another quality player who joined us in the spring,” Frid said. “Sadly, he didn’t play most of the spring games due to injury, but he showed tons of quality in practice and in the game he played. His hard work, determination and courage will help our program tremendously.”
A player who has shown to provide striking ability from the back line, Kareem Williams comes to MACU from NOC-Tonkawa. A 5-11 defenseman from Kingston, Jamaica, Williams had nine goals and eight assists in three seasons for the Mavericks while leading the 18e-ranked the club in NJCAA Division I with a 13-4-2 record in 2021.
“Kareem was another spring recruit who joined us in January,” Frid said. “He is a very humble young man who has tons of defensive and offensive qualities. We’re glad he’s here at MACU.”
Another Arizona Western star who will join the program for the 2022 season, Francois Geris-Rey is a 5-7 sophomore midfielder who played a few high-quality minutes for the fifth-ranked NJCAA Division I program. In the 2021 season, Geris-Rey has seen action in 18 games and made four starts while tallying a pair of goals and a pair of assists for the prolific attacking club.
“François played a vital role in his junior college’s record season,” Fried added. “He is a very technical player who suits our style of play. We are certainly delighted to have him this year.”
A transfer from another strong NAIA program, Maxime Ngom comes to MACU after competing for Olivet Nazarene in the 2021 season. The 6-5 midfielder appeared in 15 games and made 14 starts for the Tigers last season, helping lead the UN to a league championship Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference and an appearance in the NAIA opening round while finishing with a 16-4-1 record.
“Maxim will add power, size and quality to our team,” Fried said. “He is a proven elite athlete at the collegiate level in America and we are thrilled to add his talents to our team.”
Another European club football prodigy who will bring his talents to MACU, Kelt Jäger will bring a solid size to the Evangels defense in 2022. The 6-2 defender from Emmeloord, Netherlands hails from Almere City Football Club where he was a proven defender for the club.
“Kelt is a very mature professional personality who will add great quality to our program,” Frid said. “His quality of possession and defensive ability will improve our defensive side of the pitch. We are very happy to have him on board.”
To complete the signing class, the Evangels went halfway around the world for another great club player in Akira Ono. A 5-10 midfielder from Yokohama, Japan, Ono comes to MACU after a stellar playing career with Tokyo S Reyes FC, as he helped lead his side to the Japan Town Club Cup championship.
“Akira is a very good player with the ball at his feet,” Frid pointed out. “He is a very humble young man who we believe will develop extremely well with us. We are delighted to have him with us.”
Mid-America Christian will kick off the season with a home scrimmage against Rose State at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 10 before officially kicking off the regular season on Saturday, Aug. 20 against Bethel, Kan. at 7:30 p.m. dill.
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