The annual trip WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina for the TopDrawerSoccer.com Raleigh Combine always brings out some of the top talent of the year. This year was no exception as many boys put their skills on display.
Here’s a look at some of the standouts from the trip to North Carolina.
GK Austin Mullins, Triangle FC (2016): Mullins stood above the rest, not only because of his physical stature but also due to his commanding presence. He has a large, confident voice that allows him to command his back line. Mullins was constantly clean in his collection and distribution. Keeping with the trend with modern day keepers, Mullins is incredibly confident with his feet and is always willing to be an option for his team.
D Keenan O'Shea, Richmond United (2016): O’Shea was the stand out center back on the day. He is always up for a physical battle and is a great physical presence on the back line. O’Shea is a great leader and communicator. He has the physical and mental attributes to make a major impact at the next level.
D Roger Batse, Capital Area Railhawks Academy (2017): Throughout the day, Batse constantly showed his speed and silky touch. He is incredibly fast and fluid both on and off the ball. Batse is cut from a similar mold of some of the best attacking outside backs in the world such as Jordi Alba or Danny Alves. If he continues to progress, Batse will be a vital attacking threat and staunch defender in the collegiate game.
D Andrew Errato, Triangle FC (2016): Errato is a player with major potential and huge upside. He is very fast and shows a great understanding of the game. He is confident on the ball and at going forward and supporting the attack. Errato is a raw talent that can be molded in to a quality player with the right coaching and opportunity.
M Colin Daughtry, Midfielder, Capital Area Railhawks Academy (2017): Daughtry bossed the midfield throughout the full field scrimmages. He played simple and kept possession throughout the day. He is fluid in both his movement and touch on the ball. Daughtry is perfect for any possession-oriented team as he is constantly clean and very technical. He is a player to keep an eye on as he progresses over the next few years.
M Nicholas Guido, Charlotte Soccer Academy (2017): Guido is a central midfielder that constantly controls the flow of play. He has a smooth touch and an incredible soccer brain. Guido is surprisingly strong for his size and uses his body well. Throughout the day, Guido constantly tested the opposing defensive line and goalkeeper.
M Sawyer Royall, Wilmington Hammerheads FC (2018) Royall is one of the youngest players in this Best XI. He is an all-around player who can easily be molded in to any type of player. Royall is great in tight spaces, fast in the open field, supports his teammates and has an incredibly clean strike on the ball. Royall slotted in to multiple midfield roles throughout the day and was confident in each position.
M Casey Penland, North Carolina Fusion (2016): Penland was one of the standout attacking players on the day. Preferably a forward, Penland showed his natural ability and versatility in the attacking midfield role. He combines an immaculate touch with knowledge of the game. Not only does Penland have the vision to spot a splitting pass, he also as the ability to consistently find it.
F Colin Doyle, Elite SC (2016): Doyle earned this spot based on his ability to finish chances. He had two clean goals in the first 25 minute full field scrimmage, capitalizing on a defensive mistake and finishing a flowing team move which he was instrumental in. An excellent goal scoring forward that links well with teammates and has a natural ability to get the ball to the net.
F Gene Garrett-Peters, CASL (2017): Garrett-Peters is yet another solid player coming out of the CASL program. He is always willing to receive the ball and bring his midfielders into the attack. He is constantly moving and has great fitness. Garrett-Peters is a natural athlete with a fluid stride that he combines with a great ability to communicate and anticipate.
F Davis Biggerstaff, Charlotte Soccer Academy (2019): Biggerstaff impressed coaches on the day due to his never-say-die attitude and work rate. He is constantly moving to pressure the defensive line and provide options for his teammates. Biggerstaff isn’t a player that will fly past a defense line, but he always plays the simple, smart ball and keeps possession. He is a player that gets the job done, period. Biggerstaff has great potential, which is shown by breaking in to this Best XI at a very talented combine.
GK Caleb Herrin, FASA (2016)
F Dominic Alba, Triangle United (2017)
D Hagen Clements, Concorde Fire SC (2017)
M Drew DiSerafino, Triangle FC (2018)