AFC Cleveland is proud to announce that goalkeepers Alex Ivanov and Spencer Semple as well as forward Jordan Semple have signed with the club for the 2014 National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) season.
Ivanov returns to the Royals after spending the 2013 NPSL season with the club. The Strongsville, OH native is a standout with The Ohio State University men’s soccer program, finishing the 2013 collegiate season with 110 saves and a 0.88 save percentage. This would earn him 2nd Team All-Big Ten and B1G Defensive Player of the Week honors in addition to being named Capital One Academic All-American, Capital One Academic All-District, Academic All-B1G, and Team MVP.
“I am looking forward to once again having the opportunity to work with Alex,” AFC Cleveland head coach Andy Hoggarth remarked. “I was really impressed with his attitude and training mentality last year and then impressed with the games I watched him play for Ohio State in the fall. I feel that he not only has great size, but has all of the technical and tactical tools to be a very, very good goalkeeper.”
Ivanov is expected to be the starting keeper with the departure of Ben Yabrow.
“I’m very excited to join the team for my second year this summer, Ivanov stated. “The fans create an electric atmosphere downtown and are incredibly supportive. Having grown up in Cleveland, it’s great to be back at home playing soccer.”
Spencer Semple joins the Royals after spending time with Wright State and Niagra University.
“Spencer is a very agile goalkeeper who will provide us with competition for the goalkeeping position,” Hoggarth added. “Everyone I have talked to has had good things to say about Spencer and I feel he has the mentality that we are looking to have in our squad.”
The Canton, OH native had a stellar high school at GlenOak HS, which included being named a McDonald’s All-American finalist, Federal League Player of the Year, Stark County Player of the Year, two-time NSCAA All-Region 4, and two-time All-Ohio.
“I am very excited to be a part of the team and helping AFC Cleveland reach its goals,” Spencer Semple added. “I am also really looking forward to the upcoming NPSL season.”
Jordan Semple was a four-year starter at Walsh University, registering 18 goals and 16 assists during his time in North Canton, OH.
“Jordan brings great pace, desire and work rate,” Hoggarth commented. “The main thing I liked about Jordan was the simplicity in his game to get his head down and drive at players with speed and skill. One of the things we were looking to add this year was attacking pace to our game and I think Jordan will bring this.”
His career highlights include 2nd Team All-Conference honors in addition to an AMC Conference Championship in 2011.
“I am glad to be a part of this team and organization,” Jordan Semple concluded. “I look forward to the upcoming season and playing with this talented group.”