Former Santa Clara Broncos Starring in MLS
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Former Santa Clara University Broncos All-America honorees Mehdi Ballouchy and Peter Lowry netted goals for their respective Major League Soccer (MLS) clubs this week. Ballouchy - one of the league's top playmakers - is a starting midfielder for the Colorado Rapids. Lowry has been a rising young star with the Chicago Fire since graduating from SCU in 2008.
"It's great to see former Broncos doing great things in the league," said Santa Clara head coach Cameron Rast. "To have them really impacting the game for their teams is special for us."
Ballouchy and Lowry both were First Team NCAA All-Americans while playing at Santa Clara. Ballouchy played at SCU from 2004-05. Lowry was a four-year letterman from 2004-07. The Broncos earned a national ranking as high as No. 4 in 2004 and No. 3 in 2007 by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA).
Santa Clara has four former student-athletes playing in the MLS this season: Ballouchy (Colorado), Lowry (Chicago), Ryan Cochrane (Houston) and Joe Cannon (San Jose).
"Medhi (Ballouchy) has been a mainstay in Colorado for a number of years now and his continued success has been fun to watch over the years," said Rast. "This year in particular has been great for Peter Lowry, with him breaking into the lineup. It's good to see him making the most of his opportunities and develop as a professional player. Joe Cannon is having a good year and that's great for San Jose and it is good to see him on a regular basis with the Quakes."
Cannon continues to be the emotional leader of the Earthquakes, the team he began his pro career with in 1999. A local product from St. Francis High School and three-time All-West Coast Conference goalkeeper at Santa Clara, Cannon returned to play for the Earthquakes following stints in Europe and with the Colorado Rapids and the Los Angeles Galaxy, where he played alongside David Beckham in 2007. Cannon is one of four goalkeepers in MLS history to own 100 career victories.
Following an offseason trade from San Jose, Cochrane has immediately become part of the starting backfield for perennial league powerhouse Houston Dynamo. Cochrane was selected fifth overall in 2004 MLS Super Draft by San Jose. Cochrane was a three-year starter at Santa Clara from 2001-03 where he was named a semifinalist for the prestigious M.A.C. Hermann Trophy in 2003.