The Rochester Rhinos announced last Friday at noon that they had agreed to terms with five of the players training throughout preseason. These five players and Sanchez join the eleven already signed to the team and the two loanees sent by the New England Revolution.
Alex Dixon and Colin Rolfe, both previously with the Houston Dynamo, join the Rhinos as forwards and add depth to the front line. While neither really caught on at the MLS level, Dixon did enjoy a successful loan spell to Tampa Bay Rowdies of NASL in 2013.
Rochester's back-up for the past two seasons, goalkeeper Brandon Miller is back for the 2014 season. Miller is familiar with the club and will look to learn from recently hired goalkeeper coach Scott Vallow, who was himself a stand-out goalkeeper for the Rhinos across eight seasons.
Midfielder Mike Garzi continues in the footsteps of his former collegiate teammate Mike Reidy. Reidy, who was a speedy wing option for the Rhinos last year, and Garzi played together at Colgate University. Garzi's name may be vaguely familiar to the greater New England soccer community because he has been publicly tied to the New England Force, which may or may not still be or have ever been a thing.
Defender Pat McMahon comes to Rochester after previously playing with Swedish club Ljungskile SK. Don't be alarmed if you find yourself recognizing Swedish soccer teams, this is the same club to which Rochester sold goalkeeper Alex Horwath in the offseason while the ink was still drying on his contract with the Rhinos. McMahon traveled through Europe with Bridges FC program, a Chicago-based program to sets up exhibition matches in Europe to earn players trials and contracts with mostly Northern European clubs.
Jossimar Sanchez joined the Rhinos' training camp earlier this week and played in Friday's preseason match against Ottawa Fury. Sanchez played 33 minutes of that match while Soffner manned the net for the first half of the 1-1 draw.
Friday's announcement brings the total number of players on the Rochester Rhinos' roster to 19:
Luis Soffner (Revolution)
Brandon Miller *
Pat McMahon *
Jossimar Sanchez (Revolution) *
Alec Sundly (Revolution)
Mike Garzi *
Onua Thomas Obasi
Alex Dixon *
Colin Rolfe *
Though the USL Pro season officially started this past weekend with LA Galaxy II beating Orange County Blues and defending champions Orlando City drawing at the Charleston Battery, the Rhinos don't open play until April 5 in Orlando. There is plenty of time over the next two weeks for the team to round out its roster and develop some on-field chemistry. The Revolution will send its fourth loanee to Rochester over this coming week.
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