Wizards conjuring Cup gold in Draft?

The Kansas City Wizards entered Friday's 2005 MLS SuperDraft not needing to add much to a team that was within one goal of winning MLS Cup last season. Still, the Wizards found some productive talent and also added a player that might be able to step into the starting 11 next season.

Coach Bob Gansler selected Wake Forest's Scott Sealy with the Wizards first pick (No. 11) in the draft. The Trinidad native, who also has experience with the Trinidad & Tobago national team, finished his Demon Deacon career second on the Wake Forest all-time list in goals (43) and points (108).

"I don't think I'm going to have anything easy," said Sealy. "I know I'm going to have to go in there and have to work and I'm willing to do that. Obviously, they need someone who can score goals and I think I'm capable of doing that. Also, someone who can help set up goals and I think I can do that as well. I think if I go play my game and put my best foot forward, I think I'll do fine."

Gansler's men were also due the third selection in the second round, but they traded that pick to Los Angeles for Sasha Victorine, a player who should be able to step into the Wizard's starting lineup next season. Victorine started 25 matches for the Galaxy this season, netted three goals and added three assists.

Kansas City's second pick (No. 16) and fourth in the second round, was Ryan Pore of Mansfield, Ohio, and formerly of the Tulsa Golden Hurricane. Pore's an athletic forward and quick to the ball who is also Tulsa's only two-time All-America selection. Pore was also a National Player of the Year candidate and a finalist for the Hermann Trophy.

The Wizards made a bit of an insurance move in the third round. With Tony Meola's return uncertain, Kansas City snagged Notre Dame goalkeeper Christopher Sawyer. Sawyer, who finished his Fighting Irish career with 31 shutouts and led the country last year with a 0.457 goals-against-average, posted a 623 scoreless minute streak during the year.

With their final pick (No. 47), the Wizards braintrust added John Minagawa-Webster, a midfielder from Michigan State University. Minagawa-Webster registered nine goals and nine assists for the Spartan team which captured the 2004 Big Ten championship.

Danny Polinsky is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.


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