The Austin Chronicle

Soccer Watch

By Nick Barbaro, January 24, 2014, Sports

The Austin Aztex made a splash in the MLS SuperDraft for the second year in a row, with five former Aztex players drafted – three of whom came out of local high schools. Drafted were: Robbie Derschang (29th, Philadelphia Union), Kris Tyrpak (40th, Dripping Springs, Chivas USA), Michael Kafari (51st, Vancouver Whitecaps), Michael Lisch (54th, Westlake, Houston Dynamo), and Travis Golden (69th, Bowie, D.C. United). Lisch and Tyrpak were two of the first four players the Aztex signed back before the 2012 season, and it was Tyrpak who certainly made the biggest impression in his two years here: the Aztex' leading scorer both years, and PDL Player of the Year in 2013. Joining woeful Chivas USA is a mixed blessing: He'll have a good shot at getting playing time, but his greatest strength is in making timely attacking runs, to open up space for himself or for teammates; will Chivas be able to exploit that sort of talent? Lisch, meanwhile, will apparently move right in with Houston – he's already listed on their roster as one of three goalies, the number coach Dom Kinnear says he'll keep.

This, a year after three former Aztex were among the first 11 picks in the 2013 draft: Dillon Powers went on to be MLS Rookie of the Year, Kekuta Manneh became the youngest player in league history to score a hat trick, and Blake Smith scored a couple of big goals for the Montreal Impact. So, pipeline to the big leagues? Not a bad reputation to have.

In an interview with, Ghana midfielder Kwadwo Asamoah says he's not worried about the two European giants his team will face in the Group G Group of Death at the World Cup this summer. "I didn't even think about Germany and Portugal," he said. "What came into my mind was, 'These USA people again?'" Indeed, his Black Stars have knocked the U.S. out of the last two World Cups. "I think it is going to be war because they won't sit back to lose three times to Ghana," Asamoah said. "It is not going to be easy for only us, but Germany and Portugal too. There is no group favorite."

Copyright © 2017 Austin Chronicle Corporation. All rights reserved.