Jan 17, 2012 9:36 PM by Andrew Masuda
Three defensive stars, two from UCSB and one from Cal Poly, became Major League Soccer draft picks on Tuesday during the MLS Supplemental Draft.
The Portland Timbers used the 14th pick in the second round and 33rd overall to select Tim Pontius, the younger brother of D.C. United star Chris Pontius. The senior earned his first career All-Big West First Team honor this fall. He started in 18 games and recorded 3 goals and 1 assist. He scored the game-winner in a critical win over UC Davis and added a goal from 61 yards out in the victory.
The San Jose Earthquakes drafted Big West Defender of the Year James Kiffe with the sixth pick in the fourth and 63rd overall selection. The San Marcos High graduate was an All-Far West Region First team pick and participated in last week's MLS Combine. He recorded 2 goals and 6 assists for the Gauchos his senior year.
Last week in the MLS SuperDraft, UCSB's Luis Silva and Sam Garza went fourth and sixth overall respectively. Silva went to Toronto FC, while Garza was taken by the San Jose Earthquakes. The UCSB draft class of four is the second largest in program history. Since 2004, 22 UCSB players have been drafted into the MLS, including 10 in the Supplemental Draft.
Cal Poly captain Wes Feighner went in the fourth round with the 72nd overall pick to the Seattle Sounders. The left back became the first Mustang taken in the MLS Supplemental Draft and second player in program history ever to be drafted.
Feighner was in class on Tuesday morning when he found out he'd been drafted. "My first thought was do I still need to keep taking notes right now or do I get up and leave. I didn't really know what to do. And then from there it's sort of just been crazy," said Feighner. "I knew it was a possibility, but I figured it was a long shot."
Feighner started 67 of the 68 games he appeared in for the Mustangs. This past fall he helped Cal Poly set program defensive records for fewest goals allowed. He was an All-Far West Region second team pick his junior year after starting all 18 games and registering 3 assists. Feighner scored 4 goals his freshman year for the Mustangs. He was one of 11 players named to the College Sports Information Directors of America Academic All-District 8 team. The Kinesiology major was also the program's first player named a finalist for the prestigious Lowe's Senior CLASS Award. He says he has a cumulative GPA of slightly higher than 3.90.
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