San Jose get defensive in Supplemental Draft

Frank Yallop, John Doyle

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The San Jose Earthquakes are hoping for a UC Santa Barbara drafting double.

After taking Gauchos attacker Sam Garza with the No. 6 overall pick in the 2012 MLS SuperDraft last week, the Quakes followed up Tuesday by making Garza’s UCSB teammate, James Kiffe, one of four selections in this year’s Supplemental Draft.

Kiffe, the Big West Conference Defender of the Year, was taken in the fourth round (63rd overall) of the Supplemental Draft, which followed on the heels of the two-round SuperDraft. Having dealt their first-round Supplemental pick to Real Salt Lake for midfielder Jean Alexandre, San Jose’s first choice Tuesday was UC Riverside forward Cesar Diaz Pizarro (second round, 25th overall), the Big West’s co-Offensive Player of the Year.

The Quakes also took defenders David Tiemstra of Ohio State (third round, 44th overall), the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, and Tyler Krumpe of Loyola Marymount (fourth round, 73rd overall).

“We’re very happy with the players we selected,” Quakes general manager John Doyle said via a team spokesman. “The group includes players who stood out at our local combine and at the MLS Combine. We’ll now wait and see what they bring to camp.”

The Supplemental picks will not only have to earn a spot among San Jose’s holdovers and recent acquisitions, but also beat out a clutch of five trialists who opened camp with the Quakes on Monday. San Jose have brought in goalkeeper Evan Newton (formerly of the Houston Dynamo), midfielder Rodrigo López (whose 2012 option was declined by Portland) and defenders Kyle Davies (most recently with the LA Galaxy), Lyle Martin (a 2007 Chivas USA Supplemental Draft selection) and Josh Suggs (moving up from the Los Angeles Blues) for a look.

Geoff Lepper covers the Earthquakes for MLSsoccer.com. He can be reached at sanjosequakes@gmail.com.