LMU senior Adam Sloustcher has signed a professional developmental contract with the San Jose Earthquakes of Major League Soccer, the team announced Monday. Sloustcher becomes the seventh LMU player to sign with a Major League Soccer Team.
For Sloustcher, a native of Pleasanton, CA, this marks a return to the hometown team that he supported as a child. “Signing the contract was an unforgettable once-in-a-lifetime moment,” Sloustcher said. “It has been my goal to be a professional soccer player in the MLS and for this to happen now with my hometown team is just a dream come true.”
A team captain in 2007, Sloustcher was a rock in the heart of the Lion defense. Moving between central defender and defensive midfield, Sloustcher recovered from an early-season injury to start the final 19 games of the season, leading the Lions in minutes played with 1,666 and providing one assist. He was recognized for his efforts with a place on the All-West Coast Conference First Team. More impressive was his leadership ability, as he helped mentor a young team that included 11 newcomers through a difficult season on and off the field. A Dean’s List student at LMU, Sloustcher was recognized as Academic All-District by CoSIDA and was an Academic All- WCC honoree during his senior season.
“Adam was a steadying influence for us during his two year tenure at LMU,” Head Coach Paul Krumpe said. “I’m confident that when any of our current student-athletes think of a role model, they will think of Adam Sloustcher. I wish him luck as he continues his playing career.”
Sloustcher caught the eye of the Earthquakes when he was invited to the San Jose Pre-draft College Combine in December. Although he was not drafted in the MLS SuperDraft in January or the Supplemental Draft a week later, he continued training with the Lions in the spring in the hopes of continuing his career. That hard work came to fruition when he received a call from the San Jose General Manager John Doyle, who invited him play in the reserve game against the Los Angeles Galaxy reserves on April 4. Sloustcher suited up for San Jose, playing the entire second half. After the game, Doyle offered Sloustcher a developmental contract with the club.
“Not being picked up in the Supplemental Draft was a bit disappointing because I felt that I had played well in the Pre-Draft Combine camps,” Sloustcher said. “I knew that it was still possible to get a roster spot with any of the MLS teams, so I continued to train and work hard this spring just in case I got an opportunity. Fortunately, San Jose expressed interest in me and is allowing me to finish my education here at LMU before joining the team. I am very excited to have had the chance to complete my degree and play for the club that I have supported my whole life.”
“I couldn’t have gotten to this point without the help of my coaches and teammates at LMU. Coaches Krumpe, Mennell, and Erush, along with the administration, have been extremely supportive as I have pursued my dream,” Sloustcher added. “One of the main reasons I transferred to LMU from North Carolina was to give myself the best chance of accomplishing my personal goal of playing professionally. I am grateful for the support that I have received from my LMU coaches, teammates, friends, and family over the years. They have helped me reach my dream and I will forever be thankful.”
Sloustcher becomes the seventh Lion to sign with a Major League Soccer team and joins Bobby Burling (2003-06) as the only LMU players on active MLS rosters. Burling currently plays for Chivas USA. Other Lions who have signed to play in the MLS are Arturo Torres (1999-2002), Andres Murriagui (1999-2002), Michael Erush (2000-03), Shaun Kalnasy (2001-04), and Kevin Novak (2000-03).
Sloustcher will join the Earthquakes after finishing the school year and graduating in May.