Coastal’s McLaws accepts bid to MLS Player Combine

ccusoc-mclawsCoastal Carolina defender Shawn McLaws is one of 55 seniors in the nation to receive an invitation to attend the upcoming 2015 adidas MLS Player Combine, Major League Soccer announced Thursday.

McLaws was selected to attend the combine by a committee of NCAA Division I coaches from every conference as well as MLS representatives. NCAA Division I alternates, Division II, Division III and NAIA collegiate players, Generation adidas signings and youth internationals will be announced in the coming weeks.

Six MAC Hermann Trophy Semifinalists and seven Men’s College Cup participants are among the players that will take the field in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., from Jan. 8-13. All invited players will be eligible for selection in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft presented by adidas that will take place on Thurs, Jan. 15 in Philadelphia.

The invited players will be divided into four separate teams that are led by prominent collegiate coaches and select youth coaches. Matches will be played as doubleheaders on Jan. 9, 11 and 13. Each match is closely monitored by technical staff from all 19 MLS clubs.

McLaws becomes the eighth Chanticleer to receive an invitation to the prestigious event, joining current assistant coach Kyle Russell (2009) along with Joseph Ngwenya (2004), Mamba Chisoni (2005), Boyzz Khumalo (2005), Ashton Bennett (2013) Pedro Ribeiro (2014) and Justin Portillo (2014). McLaws is the only Big South Conference student-athlete to receive the invitation this season. Furthermore, McLaws and Clemson’s Manolo Sanchez are the only two invitees from South Carolina institutions.

McLaws, an Edmond, Okla., native, was the anchor along the backline for a Chanticleer defense that ranked 39th in the country with a 0.85 goals against average. The two-time Big South Defensive Player of the Year was Coastal’s most versatile defender, leading the defense to nine shutouts during the 2014 campaign. Coastal Carolina limited its opposition to a mere 3.30 shots on goal per game, thanks in large part to McLaws’ ability to limit balls crossed into the box from the flanks.

McLaws closed his collegiate career with a 73-18-3 record along with three Big South regular season and two tournament championships. He also helped direct the Chanticleers to the NCAA Tournament in each of his four seasons in Conway. He finished with a 6-4-0 NCAA Tournament record, including a back-to-back of Round of 16 appearances in 2012 and 2013.

A fixture in the Chanticleers’ starting XI since his freshman season, McLaws ranks is tied for second on the CCU all-time list with 89 matches played and is third with 84 career starts. He logged 7,207 minutes along the Coastal backline, missing just three matches due to injury throughout his four-year career.

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