Philadelphia KiXX Round Out Roster by Adding Four to the Front
The roster of the two-time Major Indoor Soccer League champion Philadelphia KiXX continues to take its form, with the team announcing today the addition of four forwards.
Returning to the KiXX this season will be David Castellanos and Jeremy Ortiz, and the club also adds indoor veteran Leo Gibson and Syracuse product Pete Rowley.
"One of our goals for the offseason was to improve our second forward position, and I feel that we did that by adding Leo Gibson to this year's roster," player/head coach Don D'Ambra commented. "Leo is a young, fast and skillful forward that is explosive in transition and creates offensive chances with his 1v1 abilities."
Gibson played his first two indoor seasons with the Detroit Ignition, and he was a key figure in bringing Motown the Xtreme Soccer League championship last year when he finished tied for fifth on the team with 25 points on eight goals and eight assists.
The Liberian native played college soccer at King College in Bristol, Tennessee before receiving a trial with the Dallas Burn of Major League Soccer in 2004. He spent his first four professional outdoor seasons with the Minnesota Thunder of USL-1 before spending this past year with the Cleveland City Stars.
"Along with Leo, we have Ortiz and Castellanos returning," D'Ambra continued. "This is Jeremy Ortiz's second season, and I am anticipating a big season from him on the offensive end. He has developed steadily the first season and is a much more confident player this year."
Ortiz is a native of Mount Laurel, New Jersey, and he is a graduate of LaSalle University in Philadelphia. He proved to be a durable player for the KiXX last year, playing in all 18 matches, and contributed 14 points on five goals and four assists in just his first season of professional indoor soccer.
The three-time All-Atlantic 10 player was named to the Philadelphia Soccer 7 Team three times in college, also receiving Regional All-America accolades in 2006.
Castellanos, a native of Fairfax, Virginia, attended the University of Connecticut and turned in the most successful campaign of his four-year career last season in Philadelphia. He tallied 20 points on eight goals and three assists and now has 54 points in the past four years, all of which he has spent with the KiXX.
He was a member of the 2007 MISL championship side in Philadelphia and has also spent time playing outdoors with the Virginia Beach Mariners of USL-1.
"Castellanos had his best season last year for us, and I think that he brings experience to the field and he is a natural goal scorer," D'Ambra stated. "David has matured into a solid veteran and scored some big goals for us last season."
Rowley will play his first professional season of indoor soccer this year after playing his college soccer at Syracuse University. He most recently played outdoor soccer with FC Reading Revolution of the National Premier Soccer League and also the Charleston Battery of USL-1.
"Pete Rowley is a young player out of Syracuse University," D'Ambra said. "He has good size, strength, and speed, and I feel he has the potential to be a good indoor player once he learns the game."
The Philadelphia KiXX will open their 2009-10 season this Sunday, Nov. 15, with a road contest against La Raza de Monterrey. The team will play their historic first game at the Liacouras Center on Saturday, Jan. 9, when they host the Rockford Rampage at 7:00 p.m. Season and group ticket packages for the KiXX are available now by calling 1-888-888-KiXX.
The previous story is excerpted from a press release by the Philadelphia KiXX of the MISL.
Todd Civin is a freelance writer for Bleacher Report , Sports, Then and Now , and Seamheads . He is a supporter of the children’s book A Glove of Their Own. A Glove of Their Own is the award-winning book which teaches pay it forward through sports. Please visit the site and purchase the book under today’s donor code, COV 113 Covenant House as $3.00 from each sale will help this worthwhile charity.
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