Courtesy of Akron Sports Information Department
AKRON, Ohio – Bryan Gallego and Saad Abdul-Salaam, two current members of The University of Akron men's soccer team, and David Meves, a recent alumnus of the program, have been added to the Portland Timbers Under-23 team roster for the upcoming Premier Development League (PDL) season, the Timbers' organization announced this week.
Gallego and Abdul-Salaam will join UA striker Reinaldo Brenes, who was added to the roster in April, and Meves, a current member of the Timbers' reserve team, in the Rose City for the club's season opener against Seattle Sounders FC U-23 on May 16 at JELD-WEN Field at 2 p.m. ET.
Gallego, who will be a team captain for the Zips this fall, played a key role in a dominant backline last season. The sophomore helped the Zips register 16 shutouts, earning All-MAC second-team honors. He was a member of the U.S. U-20 National Team pool in 2012 and served as captain of the U.S. U-18 side.
The fast-rising Abdul-Salaam enjoyed a breakout season in 2012, appearing in 13 matches and scoring the game-winning goal in the Mid-American Conference championship match against Northern Illinois. In all, the Gahanna, Ohio native started four contests and played a key role at both outside back and winger.
Meves finished his collegiate career at Akron in 2012 as the NCAA's all-time leader in shutouts (54) and goalkeeper minutes played (8,068). He earned All-America honors following a successful senior campaign, in which he allowed just eight goals in 22 games. A three-time Academic All-American, Meves was a key contributor to the Zips' national championship run in 2010 and assembled a career record of 77-7-10 during his collegiate career. He was selected with the No. 3 pick in the 2013 MLS Supplemental Draft by the Portland Timbers.
Founded in 2008, the Portland Timbers U-23s is an amateur team affiliated with the Portland Timbers of Major League Soccer and serves as the top development platform for the club's first team. The Timbers U-23s consist of standout players from collegiate and youth programs from Oregon, the Northwest and throughout the country, and competes in United Soccer Leagues' Premier Development League (PDL).
Since their founding, five Timbers U-23s players have signed with the first team, including goalkeeper Jake Gleeson and defender Ryan Kawulok and Timbers Homegrown Players Steven Evans and Brent Richards. The Timbers U-23s assembled an historic campaign in 2010, posting a perfect 16-0-0 record during the regular season on their way to becoming the first undefeated champion in PDL history.