HAMDEN — Former Naugatuck High School soccer standout Ryan Kinne has committed to play the 2012 season with CFC Azul of the United Soccer Leagues’ Premier Development League.
The Azul, which is entering its inaugural season, will play their home games at Yale University’s Reese Stadium.
“It’s nice to see professional soccer making a comeback in Connecticut,” Kinne said in a news release. “I am excited to be part of the inaugural season for Azul and am looking forward to making it a very successful one.”
The Premier Development League is the top amateur soccer league in America, and consisted of 65 teams during the 2011 season competing from four regions across the country, according to the Azul’s website. The league acts as a showcase of players for professional clubs.
“I have known Ryan since he was 10 years old. He banged in goals for fun then, and he does it still,” Azul head coach David Kelly said in a news release. “Ryan has pace, skill, and determination. He is a winner, and a great signing for the club. Like a few others that will be playing for the Azul this summer, this is just a stepping-stone in his career. We’re happy he’s decided to play for us this summer; and we will be proud when he moves on to bigger and better things … which he no doubt will.”
After high school, Kinne went on to become an all-American at Monmouth University where he was a finalist for Hermann Trophy, which is given to the top collegiate soccer player in the country, his junior and senior seasons. Kinne helped lead Monmouth to four straight Northeast Conference regular season titles as well as back-to-back league tournament championships.
Kinne was a third-round draft pick by the New England Revolution of Major League Soccer in January 2011. Kinne saw action in one game when the Revolution defeated D.C. United 2-1 on March 26, 2011. He also played in and started 10 games for the Revolutions reserve squad, according to the release.
Before playing for the Revolution, Kinne played for the Central Jersey Spartans of the PDL in their inaugural season. He played in 10 games for the Spartans and scored three goals
CFC Azul’s season begins May 5 at home against Boston. For more information, visit www.cfcazul.com.