Scot Thompson selected to represent USL in All-Star game

PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland Timbers defender Scot Thompson today was selected to play in the 2006 USL First Division All-Star game, which will be held Wednesday, July 19, in Cary, N.C.

The all-star game pits the best players from the USL First Division against English Coca-Cola Championship side Sheffield Wednesday. The match is set to kick off at 5 p.m. (Pacific) on July 19 and will be carried live on Fox Soccer Channel.

Thompson, 25, was a USL First Division All-League First Team selection with the Timbers in 2005 and was a finalist for the First Division’s Defender of the Year award. A four-time member of the league’s “Team of the Week” in 2005, Thompson tallied four goals and two assists in his second season with the Timbers.

“It feels great, although I’m still in shock that I got picked,” said Thompson, who is the Timbers team captain this season. “We have a very strong team though and there were several of our players who deserved to be picked, so I’m honored to be the one selected.”

This season, Thompson has made 12 appearances for the Timbers, including helping lead Portland to its first-ever point against Rochester by scoring a goal on June 17.

Drafted by the Galaxy in the second round (16th overall) of the 2003 MLS SuperDraft, Thompson was a member of the U.S. U-18 National Team pool in high school before becoming a standout defender at UCLA, where he was named to the Pac-10’s first team his senior year.

The coaches for the team are Montreal’s Nick DeSantis, who will serve as head coach, and Rochester’s Laurie Calloway. The pair finished first and second for the 2005 Coach of the Year honors, respectively. DeSantis and Calloway also assisted in the squad selection, along with the USL.

“With the opponent in the All-Star game being an established club side, we wanted to ensure that not only were the fan favorites represented, but also players who would make the team complete from a competitive standpoint, which is often not the case with All-Star games,” said USL Director of Pro League Operations Steven Thompson. “I think we struck a great balance in selecting stars from across the league and have built a team that will be very good coming together with brief preparation for the match.”

Leading the list of players is former World Cup MVP Romario, who currently ranks second in the league with nine goals this season. The Brazilian legend will be joined by fellow 1994 World Cup teammate Zinho and Guatemalan international Mario Rodriguez.

Two other all-league selections from last season join Thompson with two-time Defender of the Year Gabriel Gervais of Montreal alongside Petter Villegas of Puerto Rico.

Players from Seattle and Vancouver were unavailable for selection to due scheduled friendlies with their club.

USL FIRST DIVISION ALL-STAR GAME ROSTER
G - Nelson, Matt, Virginia Beach Mariners
G - Vallow, Scott, Rochester Raging Rhinos
D - Branan, Dustin, Minnesota Thunder
D - Gervais, Gabriel, Montreal Impact
D - Sanfilippo, Frank, Rochester Raging Rhinos
D - Thompson, Scot, Portland Timbers
D - Vincello, Mauricio, Montreal Impact
D/M - Segovia, Mauricio, Puerto Rico Islanders
M - Ball, John, Rochester Raging Rhinos
M - Daley, Omar, Charleston Battery
M - Dodds, Jamie, Toronto Lynx
M - Shak, Steve, Virginia Beach Mariners
M - Zinho, Miami FC
M/F - Villegas, Petter, Puerto Rico Islanders
F - McLaughlin, Jason, Atlanta Silverbacks
F - Rodriguez, Mario, Miami FC
F - Romario, Miami FC
F - Simmonds, Greg, Virginia Beach Mariners

The match will be the second time in as many weeks that Thompson will line up against opposition from England’s Coca-Cola Championship. Thompson will lead the Timbers against Coventry City in an exhibition match at PGE Park on July 8. Kickoff for the match is set for 7 p.m., and tickets for the event are still available by visiting area Ticketmaster locations, www.pgepark.com or www.ticketmaster.com, or by calling (503) 244-4400. For group ticket information, call the PGE Park ticket office at (503) 553-5555.