Every soccer player that plays the game at some point has a dream to play professionally. Cody Troyer, the Pilot's goalkeeper in the last four years, and Arron Patrick, currently soccer assistant coach and 2011 Bethel graduate, are taking their game to the next level.
Both players have just returned from a pro tour with PSC (Pro Soccer Consulting) to Antalya, Turkey where they played against pro teams from around the world in front of pro scouts and coaches.
PSC represents pro teams and players around globe and they have offices in Los Angeles and England. They select players from many different combines in the US and Europe and put a select team together to compete in Turkey every year against pro teams from China, South Africa, Russia, Kazakhstan, Belarus, English, America and many other countries from around the world.
Troyer and Patrick are following the steps of other pilot soccer players such as Carlos Machado, Pablo Rodriguez, Andres Rodriguez, Hugo Gonzalez, and Eric Carpenter as they take their game to the next level.
While in Turkey, Troyer and Patrick played very well in games against some high level teams and their performances sparked the interest of pro coaches. They both were invited to play a few games with US pro team Wilmington Hammerheads. Arron Patrick has received an offer and is signing a contract for the 2013 season. Wilmington soccer franchise was founded in 1996 in North Carolina and currently plays in the American Division of the USL Pro League, in the second tier of pro soccer in the United States.
"Signing this contract is the end product of three months of hard work for me", says Arron Patrick. "At the beginning of the Bethel season I was asked to go on the trip as I tried to get Cody a tryout at a professional club, and it kind of snowballed from there. From September until February it was all about getting in shape, shoveling snow to be able to practice and preparing to compete after a three year layoff. Luckily for me, the Bethel team helped push me, especially Zach Drake who became my training partner. Playing professionally has always been in the back of my mind since graduation but God put more important things on my heart such as getting married, starting our home together and becoming a college soccer coach. With the support of many friends and family this great opportunity has now materialized. This just serves as an example to me that anything is possible when you trust in God's plan and timing and I hope if nothing else this can show some of our guys on the team that they can dream big and move on to play at the next level. This has been a great journey and I am so excited to see where God takes us."
"Cody and Paddy have both worked very hard and have done very well at the college level" says Coach Pinto. "It has been a pleasure to work with them and very rewarding to see them getting the opportunity at the highest level of the game. This is great for our program and I am excited for Paddy in his upcoming season with Wilmington. The club has a great environment and we will be following him on his journey. We have other players who have the potential and this can help them as they continue to develop on and off the field. What excites me the most is seeing how their time at Bethel has been very significant in developing their character and vision in life."
During their Bethel careers, Arron Patrick has been named All-Conference 1st Team three consecutive years – 2007, 2008 and 2009. He was All-Region VIII 2nd Team and named MCC Offensive Player of the Year in 2008. In 2009, he was selected MCC Conference Player of the Year and selected to the NCCAA DI All-American team.
Cody has also been selected All-Conference 1st Team for three consecutive years – 2010, 2011 and 2012. He was Crossroads League Academic All-Conference and NAIA Scholar-Athlete award in 2011 and 2012. He has received NCCAA All Regional honors in 2011 and was also selected to the NCCAA DI All-American team in 2012. Also in 2012, Cody was named to the Capital One Academic All-American 1st Team