Wizards take Myers first overall
BALTIMORE -- Chance Myers' decision to leave school early paid off Friday when the Kansas City Wizards selected him with the first pick in the Major League Soccer SuperDraft.
"It's an honor to be here and be chosen No. 1," said Myers, a sophomore defender from UCLA. "I look forward to coming in and contributing right away."
Brek Shea, a 17-year-old midfielder, was taken by FC Dallas with the second pick, and Real Salt Lake used the third selection on Myers' UCLA teammate, midfielder Tony Beltran.
Myers, 20, started all 21 games for the Bruins last season, scored three goals and earned an All-Pac 10 first team selection. He said he wasn't sure if he was ready for the draft, but UCLA coach Jorge Salcedo gave him the green light.
The Wizards traded eight-year veteran defender Nick Garcia to the San Jose Earthquakes on Tuesday in exchange for the rights to the top selection.
"When I heard they traded for the No. 1 pick, (MLS commissioner) Mike Garland said the interest was high and I could be No. 1," Myers said. "After the season was over, it was kind of unexpected if I was going to leave or going to stay, but my choice paid off."
The Wizards (11-12-7) finished fifth in the East last season and lost to the Houston Dynamo in the Western Conference finals.
Other first-round selections were: No. 4, Sean Franklin (L.A. Galaxy); No. 5, Ciarin O'Brien (Colorado Rapids); No. 6, Andy Iro (Columbus Crew); No. 7, Patrick Nyarko (Chicago Fire); No. 8, Josh Lambo (Dallas); No. 9, Julius James (Toronto); No. 10, Pat Phelan (Toronto); No. 11, Roger Espinoza (Kansas City); No. 12, Dominic Cervi (Chicago); No. 13, Rob Valentino (New England Revolution); No. 14, David Horst (Real Salt Lake).