Red Bulls II coach John Wolyniec on Rafael Diaz (above): “He continues to grow and we hope we continue to push him to become a better goalkeeper and to continue to take steps in his career.” (Photo courtesy of St. John’s SID)
HARRISON, N.J. — Red Bulls II shored up their goalkeeping Wednesday.
They re-signed goalkeepers Rafael Diaz and signed Evan Louro, the defending United Soccer League champions announced.
Diaz, a former standout at St. John’s University, spent the last two seasons with Red Bulls II. He finished 2016 with a save percentage of .905, the best in USL amongst players with a minimum of five appearances. The Rockaway, N.J., native has played 11 games in two seasons over 819 minutes. Last year, Diaz allowed just two goals in five appearances, recording three shutouts.
“Rafa has given a lot to the club over the last two years here at Red Bull,” head coach John Wolyniec said in a statement. “We’re happy to continue to have him around. He’s been great for our team, for our locker room. He continues to grow and we hope we continue to push him to become a better goalkeeper and to continue to take steps in his career.”
A native of South River, N.J., Louro finished his college career at the University of Michigan, registering 46 appearances, 4,248 minutes played and a 1.17 goals-against average. He produced 155 saves and 12 shutouts. As a sophomore, Louro recorded a career-best 1.05 GAA, ranking second in season program history and seven clean sheets. As a freshman, he recorded a team-high 28 saves and tied for most wins and shutouts. That earned him a call-up to the U.S. Under-20 national team camp.
“Evan’s been with our academy a long time, I got to work with him when he was a U-14 with the club,” Wolyniec said. “Now, I have the great pleasure of working with him as a pro and I hope I can help him continue to improve and start off his career in the right way.”