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Early Bird 2017

DAYTONíS ABUBAKAR TAKEN NO. 5 OVERALL IN MLS SUPERDRAFT

Release: 01/14/2017
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Courtesy: Atlantic 10 Conference
LOS ANGELES – As part of the 2017 MLS SuperDraft, University of Dayton men's soccer player Lalas Abubakar was taken No. 5 by the Columbus Crew in the first round.

Abubakar completed a stellar Dayton career after being named Scholar All-America, Atlantic 10 Defender of the Year, First Team All-Conference, Second Team All-Region, Senior CLASS Award Finalist, and team MVP this past season. He played 61 career games for the Flyers and totaled four goals and four assists while being the anchor on strong defensive units.

"This is a very exciting day for the University of Dayton and our men's soccer team," said head coach Dennis Currier. "Lalas has been a critical member of our success the last three years. He made a promise to help bring us a championship when we recruited him in 2014 and his impact was felt immediately after capturing the 2015 A-10 title. Lalas had a tremendous combine and represented our program extremely well. He is a winner and I am confident he will contribute to the Columbus Crew immediately. It was great to see he would not be far from us so we can catch some of his home games. It has been an incredible journey. This is a great day for Lalas and our program."

The Ghana native played 1,770 minutes for the Flyers as they won eight games and advanced to the semifinals of the Atlantic 10 Tournament in 2016.

Following in the footsteps of fellow countryman Amass Amankona (2015 draft pick by Real Salt Lake), Abubakar is second Dayton player drafted in the MLS SuperDraft in as many seasons. He is the sixth Flyer to be drafted into the MLS (Denny Clanton 2004, Chris Rolfe 2005, Dasan Robinson 2006, Isaac Kissi 2010, Amass Amankona 2016).

Abubakar also became the second-highest ever draft pick for any Dayton student-athlete, behind Jim Paxton Sr. in the 1956 NBA Draft.
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