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Where They Have Gone

The opportunity for San Jacinto College soccer players to continue their education and playing careers at four-year institutions is real. Over the past four years, more than a dozen players have been invited to do just that at colleges and universities across the country. Here are the players who have moved on to compete at four-year programs:

Where They Have Gone

  • Roberto Fernandez - University of the Incarnate Word (NCAA DI)
  • Derick Gonzalez - Fort Hays State University (NCAA DII)
  • Prince Ihenacho - Lubbock Christian University (NCAA DII)
  • Ricardo Olaya - Central Methodist University (NAIA)
  • David Koloko Gardner - Webb University (NCAA DI)
  • Ian Barbosa - University of St. Thomas Cristian Cruz University of Texas at Dallas
  • Stephen Melchor - University of Texas at Dallas
  • O’Neal Moore - University of Incarnate Word
  • Gonzalo Orozco - St Mary’s University
  • Ezequiel Amestoy - Wayland Baptist University (NAIA)
  • Arturo Araiza - Louisiana State University at Alexandria (NAIA)
  • Call Casarez - Midwestern State University (NCAA DII)
  • Alonso Gallegos - University of Incarnate Word (NCAA DI)
  • Brian Mulchahey - Louisiana State University at Alexandria (NAIA)
  • David Perez - University of St. Thomas (NAIA)
  • Pablo Reyes - Louisiana State University at Alexandria (NAIA)
  • Michael Rich - Louisiana State University at Alexandria (NAIA)
  • Jose (Sito) Seoane - Southern New Hampshire University (NCAA DII)
  • Jesse Suarez - Louisiana State University at Alexandria (NAIA)
  • Pablo Vasquez - San Diego State University (NCAA DI)
  • Rodrigo Holden - University of St. Thomas (NAIA)
  • Daniel Porlan - Belhaven University (NAIA)

 

  • Jerson Carrasco - Western Illinois (DI)
  • Benito Amaral - Creighton University (DI)
  • Nataki Stewart - University of St. Thomas (NAIA)
  • Jamie Rodriguez - Huston-Tillotson (NAIA)
  • Elmer Mejia - Huston-Tillotson (NAIA)
  • Amaury Ponce - Southern Methodist University (DI)

 

  • Edgar Alvarez - University of Incarnate Word (D-II)
  • Carlos Recinos - Coker College (D-II)
  • Emmanual Frias - Texas A&M International (D-II)
  • Edgar Montoya - University of Houston-Victoria (NAIA)
  • Edward Campbell - Lindsay Wilson University (NAIA)
  • Josue Garcia - Northeastern State University (D-II)

 

  • Edgar Alvarez - University of Incarnate Word (D-II)
  • Carlos Recinos - Coker College (D-II)
  • Emmanual Frias - Texas A&M International (D-II)
  • Edgar Montoya - University of Houston-Victoria (NAIA)
  • Edward Campbell - Lindsay Wilson University (NAIA)
  • Josue Garcia - Northeastern State University (D-II)

 

  • Kieron Bernard - Austin Aztex USL I (professional)
  • Gabriel Rodriguez - Virginia Commonwealth University (D-1)
  • Cyprian Hedrick - Coastal Carolina University (D-1)
  • Oscar Suvias - Texas A&M International (D-II)

 

  • Frazier Biba – Embry-Riddle, Arizona campus (NAIA)
  • Emilio Frias – Southwest Assemblies of God (NAIA)
  • Phillip Hagen – Tusculum University (D-II)
  • Roy Hernandez – Texas A&M International (D-II)
  • Corey McPhearson – Tusculum University (D-II)
  • Caesar Vallejo – University of Texas – Dallas (D-III)
  • Carlos Villa – University of Hartford (D-I)
  • Leon Williams - University of San Francisco (D-I)
  • Ricardo Ximines – Florida International (D-I)

 

  • Charles Hines – William Carey College (NAIA)
  • Howard Wong – University of Hartford (D-I)
  • Ruzdhi Halili – Houston Baptist University (D-I)
  • Ardalan Attar – University of San Francisco (D-I)
  • Derrick Henry – Belmont University (D-I)

 

  • Brandon Durden – Houston Baptist University (D-I)
  • Erik Sorenson – DePaul University (D-I)
  • Ryan Maxwell – University of Tampa (D-II)

 

  • Dane Richards – Clemson University (D-I)
  • Juan Adan – William Carey College (NAIA)
  • Ashkan Attar – Grand Canyon University (D-II)
  • Luis Hernandez – Mercer University (D-I)
  • Matt Tompkins – University of Philadelphia (D-I)
  • Dao Vu – Houston Baptist University (D-I)
  • Jeremy Butterfield – University of Philadelphia (D-I)

 

Soccer players of any age can gain inspiration from the tale of Dane Richards, a former star at San Jacinto College. There is little doubt that the Jamaican-born Richards and many of his peers dreamed one day of making it to the big stage. Well, Dane has done it.

Prior to the 2003 season, Richards might not have known exactly where Houston was on the map, but former San Jacinto College head coach Ben Hunter knew him. Hunter, who had developed quite a knack for recruiting players from Jamaica, brought Richards to San Jacinto College that season. The rest, as they say, is history.

The 2003 team, the last to play for the now retired Hunter, won 17 straight games before falling to Tyler in the Region XIV title game. Richards, displaying remarkable speed and ball handling skills, scored 20 goals that season. Playing for current head coach Dave Santesteban the following season, Richards scored 25 times, becoming the all-time career scorer at sanjac. Along the way, Richards guided the team to a third-place national finish.

Richards went on to lead Clemson University to the NCAA College Cup. After graduation, the New York Red Bulls drafted him in the second round of the 2007 amateur draft.

Now, the Montego Bay native is playing the sport professionally. The Red Bulls’ midfielder made his first professional start in April 2007 at Columbus and notched his first MLS point when he assisted on Clint Mathis' goal on April 15 against FC Dallas. Richards scored his first career MLS goal on May 5, 2007, against Real Salt Lake. As a rookie in 2007, Richards started 27 of 28 games played, finishing with two goals and six assists. He was a finalist for the 2007 MLS Rookie of the Year.

At 5-7, 153 pounds, Richards is a bit small to play forward in the pro league, but he made a quick transition to midfield and appears to be a fixture for many years to come.

“I knew Dane could do this,” Santesteban said. “In 2004, it didn’t take me long to see what type of player he was and what he could become. It’s a credit to his work ethic. It proves that if you do things right and believe, you have a chance to do whatever you like.”