Timbers U-23s announce first players for 2013 season

Defenders Hobbs, Hewett, Seymore return, team adds Blake Hylen

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Portland Timbers U-23s today announced their first four roster players for the upcoming 2013 Premier Development League (PDL) season. Defenders Evyn Hewett, Anthony Hobbs and Will Seymore return for a second season and joining the team is goalkeeper Blake Hylen.

Hewett, Hobbs and Seymore all contributed to a Timbers U-23s backline in 2012 that allowed just 16 goals, tied for the fewest in the Western Conference. Hylen is a collegiate teammate of Hewett’s at San Diego State University and recently completed his junior season.

Hewett (La Palma, Calif.) played his junior season at San Diego State last fall, where he was named to the 2012 All-Pac-12 Conference first team. In 19 games (all starts), Hewett registered two goals and three assists, including the game-winning goal in the Aztecs’ 1-0 win over Clemson on Oct. 19, 2012. In total, Hewett has played in 30 games (26 starts) for the Aztecs, logging three goals and three assists. For the Timbers U-23s, Hewett appeared in 15 games, leading the team with 1,340 minutes played, as Portland reached the Western Conference semifinals.

Hobbs (Auckland, New Zealand) played in 16 games for the U-23s in 2012. He recently finished his collegiate career at Florida International University, appearing in 18 games as a senior in 2012. Hobbs was a four-year starter at FIU and a four-time All-Conference USA selection. He was named a finalist for the 2012 Senior CLASS Award for his accomplishments on the field, in the classroom and in the community. Hobbs was a member of the New Zealand U-23 National Team in 2012 and helped the team qualify for the London 2012 Olympics. He has also represented New Zealand at the U-17 and U-20 levels, playing in both the 2007 FIFA U-17 and 2011 FIFA U-20 World Cups.

Hylen (San Diego, Calif.) started 12 games and recorded two shutouts as a junior at San Diego State last season. He recorded a career-high 11 saves in a scoreless, double-overtime draw against Indiana on Sept. 2, 2012. In three seasons with the Aztecs, Hylen has played in 31 games, recording 121 saves and a 1.41 goals-against average. He was named All-Pac-12 honorable mention in 2011 following his sophomore campaign in which he made 18 starts and registered 71 saves.

Seymore (Soham, England) recently completed his sophomore season at Oregon State University in 2012. He made an immediate impact for the Beavers upon his arrival, starting all 34 of his appearances and recording three goals and three assists in his first two collegiate seasons. Seymore, who appeared in 12 games for the Timbers U-23s last season, played four seasons (2007-10) with English club Soham Town Rangers prior attending Oregon State.

The Timbers U-23s open the 2013 season Thursday, May 16, as they play host to the Seattle Sounders FC U-23 as part of a Providence Health & Fitness Day at JELD-WEN Field. Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. (Pacific).

Founded Nov. 11, 2008, the Portland Timbers U-23s, presented by Billups Worldwide, is an amateur team affiliated with the Portland Timbers of Major League Soccer and serves as a development platform for the club's first team. The team consists of standout players from collegiate and youth programs from Oregon, the Northwest and throughout the country, and competes in United Soccer Leagues’ Premier Development League (PDL). Since their founding, five Timbers U-23s players have signed with the first team, including goalkeeper Jake Gleeson and defender Ryan Kawulok and Timbers Homegrown Players Steven Evans and Brent Richards. The Timbers U-23s assembled an historic campaign in 2010, posting a perfect 16-0-0 record during the regular season on their way to becoming the first undefeated champion in PDL history.