Tacoma Native 5th Overall Selection in MLS SuperDraft

Ciaran O’Brien of Tacoma was taken by Colorado with the fifth pick overall in Friday’s Major League Soccer SuperDraft.

BALTIMORE – Ciaran O’Brien of Tacoma was taken by Colorado with the fifth pick overall in Friday’s Major League Soccer SuperDraft.

O’Brien, a 20-year-old midfielder who had signed with the MLS Generation adidas earlier this winter, played two collegiate seasons. He was a third team All-American at UC Santa Barbara last fall after transferring from San Diego.

O’Brien is the younger brother of the Seattle Sounders’ Leighton O’Brien, and is the son of former NASL veteran Fran O’Brien. Ciaran is a product of FC United and also played for Decatur High School.

Three Northwest standouts were drafted in the second round of the SuperDraft.

A midfielder for the U17 national team, Alex Nimo was taken by Salt Lake with the 15th pick. Eight years ago, Nimo and his family arrived in Portland as refugees from Liberia. He starred for both FC Portland and Benson High School, where he was a prep All-American, and joined the U.S. Soccer residency program a year ago.

George Josten was the first of two Gonzaga draftees, going 20th to Columbus. A forward, Josten became the first Bulldog picked since Brian Ching in 2001. Josten, 21, had earlier been named the NSCAA/adidas Scholar Athlete of the Year and first team all-West Coast Conference.

Selected by the L.A. Galaxy with the 21st pick was Washington’s Ely Allen. Allen, 21, scored 12 goals and was Pac-10 co-player of the year as a senior. He played for both Kentridge High School and Emerald City FC.

A surprise pick was Gonzaga defender Austin Washington. The Spokane native was selected in the fourth round and 54th overall by Chicago. Washington, 22, was second team all-WCC. He played at Ferris High School and initially enrolled at Whitworth before transferring across town to the Zags following his freshman season.