Monday, December 16, 2013
College of Charleston senior goalkeeper Kees Heemskerk was selected as one of 50 NCAA Division I seniors invited to showcase their talents at the 2014 adidas MLS Player Combine from January 10-14 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Heemskerk (Zaandam, Netherlands) will seek to impress the 19 MLS coaching staffs on hand to get selected in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft that will take place on January 16 in Philadelphia.
“The feeling of being selected for the combine was great, but I realize it’s just a beginning,” said Heemskerk. “I am going to work hard this break to play well at the MLS combine and hopefully get picked in the draft so I can earn a contract with an MLS team.
“I feel fortunate that our program provided me with so many opportunities to help me be selected for the combine. I think making the NCAA Tournament my freshman year helped put my name out there, and then being able to play and beat some of the best teams in the country each year again served as a platform for this opportunity. We were also fortunate to play against multiple MLS teams in our spring season, which helped those teams see me and allowed me to see the level I needed to strive for.”
Heemskerk’s maturity, development and leadership were cornerstones of the Cougar program over the last several years. His on-field prowess was also instrumental to the Cougars’ success over his career, playing virtually every possible minute in goal before a back injury in the 2013 season. Kees maintained a 1.27 goals-against average and .769 save percentage on his career with 15 shutouts.
“Kees is most deserving of this recognition and I’m so proud of him for all he has done in our program.” Said CofC head coach Ralph Lundy. “He was a tremendous recruit for our program, from one of the best youth academies in the world, and he did not disappoint. Kees has played a major part in our program’s success over the last four years; now I look forward to watching the next steps he will take at the professional level.”
Of the 50 players selected, Heemskerk is one of just four goalkeepers represented.
“I’m extremely happy I have the opportunity to make my lifelong dream come true,” said Heemskerk. “I’m going to do everything I can to make it happen.”