|Revolution’s Kevin Alston named 2013 MLS Comeback Player of the Year||12.03.13 at 12:49 pm ET|
Revolution defender Kevin Alston was named MLS Comeback Player of the Year on Monday after playing this season despite being diagnosed with chronic myelogenous leukemia, a rare but treatable form of leukemia, back in April.
The 25-year-old Alston started the first four games of the 2013 season before he left New England’s game against Dallas on March 30 feeling sick. After multiple medical tests, it was revealed that Alston had been diagnosed with cancer.
Alston was placed on the disabled list on April 8 and immediately began treatment. Alston returned to the pitch July 27 and proceeded to play in five of New England’s final 14 games, including the last three games. Alston’s presence out on the field was huge down the stretch, as he helped New England advance to the playoffs for the first time since 2009.
Alston handily won the vote over Philadelphia’s Conor Casey, Seattle’s Lamar Neagle and Portland’s Donovan Ricketts, receiving 99.8 percent of the vote from players, team officials and media members.
New England is coming off of a bounce-back campaign in 2013, as the Revolution finished third in the Eastern Conference with 51 points.
The Revolution also announced that tickets are on sale for the 2014 season, including four- or six-game holiday gift packs, which also give purchasers exclusive pre-sale opportunities for Gillette Stadium concerts and special events.
|Revolution eliminated in Eastern Conference semis||11.07.13 at 11:07 am ET|
The Revolution’s incredible late-season run has finally come to a close, as New England was eliminated by Sporting Kansas City in the Eastern Conference semifinals after losing 4-3 on aggregate goals over a span of two games.
SKC’s Claudio Bieler scored the series-deciding goal in the 113th minute. The teams played a mandatory 30-minute overtime as they were even in goals for the series through regulation.
New England led the series 2-1 after its first game on Saturday at Gillette Stadium before losing 3-1 at Sporting Park in Kansas City on Wednesday.
The defeat was the Revolution’s first loss since Sept. 14, as New England was on a seven-game unbeaten streak (5-0-2).
Kansas City dominated in the first half, with an 11-2 lead in shots over the first 45 minutes of play. Kansas City’s constant pressure on New England finally manifested into a goal in the 41st minute, as defender Aurelien Collin put the ball past goalie Matt Reis, tying the series at 2-2.
Entering the second half, Reis gave the Revolution new life after robbing SKC’s Dom Dwyer of a goal on two occasions in the 55th minute. Reis’ clutch play seemed to energize his team, as New England began to generate more offense as the second half wore on. New England finally broke through in the 70th minute, as Dimitry Imbongo received a pass from Kelyn Rowe and proceeded to bury it into the net.
The advantage would not last, as SKC’s Seth Sinovic scored just nine minutes later to once again tie the series at three apiece. It was Sinovic’s first goal in almost a year, as the Kansas City native had not scored since last year’s Eastern Conference semifinals.
With the victory, SKC advances to the Eastern Conference championship, where it will face off against Houston.
Despite the disappointing finish, 2013 was a huge bounce-back season for the Revolution, as they made it to the playoffs for the first time since 2009.
|MLS draft: Revolution use No. 1 pick on Louisville’s Andrew Farrell||01.17.13 at 3:01 pm ET|
At the Major League Soccer draft in Indianapolis on Thursday, the New England Revolution, who on Wednesday traded up for the No. 1 pick, selected University of Louisville junior defender Andrew Farrell.
Farrell, who stands 5-foot-11 and 165 pounds, this season was named an NSCAA first-team All-America player and the Big East Defender of the Year. The Louisville native, who lived in Peru from the ages of 5 to 15, transitioned from midfield to back before this season and still managed to finish third on the team with four goals and nine points. The Revs project him to be a central defender or right back.
“I don’t know what exactly they’re going to play me at or where they’re going to try me out at,” Farrell said in a conference call with the media after his selection. “I guess I’ll find out soon enough. I’m just excited for the opportunity.”
The Revs were slotted fourth before they traded that pick and allocation money to Toronto FC for the top pick, with an eye on Farrell.
“We’re very pleased to add Andrew to the Revolution,” general manager Michael Burns said in a story on the team’s website. “We believe he is the best player available in this draft class and proactively made the deal with Toronto to move up the draft order so we could ensure he was available when we picked. We’re looking forward to getting him into camp with us and getting him acclimated to the Revolution. We believe he has a very bright future with our club and in this league.”
Two New England college products went right after Farrell, as UConn midfielder Carlos Alvarez was selected second overall by Chivas USA and Boston College’s Kyle Bekker went third to Toronto. Also, BC forward Charlie Rugg went 19th to the Los Angeles Galaxy, Northeastern forward Don Anding went 26th to the Philadelphia Union, and Brown defender Dylan Remick went 35th to the Seattle Sounders.
In the second round, the Revs had two early picks (21st and 23rd overall) and they used them on Charlotte forward Donnie Smith and Xavier forward Luke Spencer. Smith, a left-side attacker, was named to the College Cup All-Tournament team in 2011 after leading his team to the national championship game. He finished the 2012 season with four goals and four assists in 19 games (16 starts). Spencer is a 6-foot-2 senior who had 14 goals and eight assists and led to the Musketeers to an NCAA tournament berth this past season (they lost in the second round to eventual champion Indiana).
With the 36th pick, the Revs tabbed 6-foot-4 goalie Luis Soffner from Indiana. Soffner improved his stock with a strong senior season, recording a 0.72 goals-against average and .816 save percentage in 24 games. He recorded 13 shutouts, including a 1-0 victory over Georgetown in the national championship game, leading to his selection as the College Cup Most Outstanding Defensive Player.
The Revolution, under first-year coach Jay Heaps, went 9-17-8 in 2012, their third straight losing season and second straight ninth-place finish in the Eastern Conference.
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