Rough Riders add seven to PDL side

Long Island Rough Riders News Release -

Friday, May 11, 2007

PLAINVIEW, NY -- The Rough Riders Men’s Team has added seven players who will be available for this Saturday’s home opener against the Rhode Island Stingrays. Mike Grella, Pavelid Castaneda Alex Grendi, Mike Palacio, Tim Melia, Miguel Martinez and Yahaya Musa will join the Rough Riders as they kick off their 2007 USL PDL season.

Forward Mike Grella has stood out at Duke University since his first day on the squad. The Glen Cove native was selected as the Ronald McDonald House Charities Student-Athlete of the Week in 2006. During his freshman year with the Blue Devils, Grella was named to the All-ACC Freshman Team. He was also chosen as the 2004 National Soccer Coaches Association of America National High School Player of the Year.

Duke teammate Pavelid Castaneda joins Grella on the Rough Riders. Castaneda, a defender from West Babylon, NY, was named to the United States Under-18 National Team. He was chosen as an NSCAA Youth All-American, and recognized by Sports Illustrated in 2004 in its “Faces in the Crowd” section.

University of Pennsylvania midfielder Alex Grendi brings strong determination and grit to the Rough Riders. Grendi was named to the All-Ivy 2nd Team in 2006, and scored the game-winning goal against Duquesne University to help UPenn clinch the Penn Soccer Classic Title.

Local standout Miguel Martinez provides the Rough Riders with a nose for the goal. Martinez has received numerous accolades during his career at Herkimer Community College, including NSCAA Division III National Junior College “Player of the Year”. He was also selected to the NSCAA/Adidas All-American First Team in 2005 and 2006. In two years at HCC, Martinez scored 21 goals and added 26 assists.

Midfielder Michael Palacio has been a strong offensive force for his Stony Brook University squad. Palacio, from Long Beach, NY, was named the America East Midfielder of the Year in 2006 after a stellar year with the Seawolves. He was also named to the America East First Team All-Conferece and Division I All-Northeast Region Second Team.

Defender Yahaya Musa will provide strength and speed on the backline. Musa, also from Stony Brook University, was named to the America East All-Conference Team in 2006. He was a constant force for the Seawolves, being named to the America East All-Conference Second Team in 2005, and the All-Rookie Team in 2004.

Keeper Timmy Melia has proven to be solid between the pipes. Melia, from Great River, NY, was named to the NSCAA/Adidas Division II All-South Region Second Team in 2006. He was also recognized by the Sunshine State Conference as the Men’s Soccer “Player of the Week” in September 2006, and was named to the All-Sunshine State Conference Men’s Soccer Team First Team.

“Each player brings his own strengths and experiences,” said Rough Riders General Manager Flavio Ferri. “These players have enormous talent and skill, and their determination and work ethics are admirable. We’re all looking forward to seeing them compete this season.”

The Rough Riders Opening Day is this Saturday, May 12th at Michael J. Tully Park in New Hyde Park. The Women’s team kicks off the night against the New York Magic at 6PM, followed by the Men’s Team against the Rhode Island Stingrays.

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