Ricky Lopez-Espin, a forward out of Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, was picked by Real Salt Lake in the 2018 MLS SuperDraft earlier today. RSL selected Lopez-Espin with the 10th pick of the second round, and the 33rd pick overall.
The 6’3” forward comes with a successful collegiate pedigree, most recently boasting the Big East Conference Player of the Year in 2017 along with a selection to the Big East All-Conference First Team. He was also named to the Division I All-Great Lakes Region First Team his senior year, after notching a career-high 12 goals in 18 games.
In 2016 as a junior, he was selected to the NSCAA All-Great Lakes Region Second Team, as well as the Big East All-Conference Second Team and the Big East All-Tournament team. He put in 10 goals his junior year, coming from a total of 64 shots (26 on frame) through 22 games.
In addition to his accomplishments at Creighton University, Lopez-Espin was called into the US Men’s U-20 National Team in 2014, where he participated in Tab Ramos’ January camp.
He currently holds the #42 spot in the College Men’s Top 100 at TopDrawerSoccer.com.
Ricky joins a stellar cast of attacking players with Real Salt Lake, falling alongside Alfredo Ortuño, Joao Plata, Jefferson Savarino, Brooks Lennon, Corey Baird, Yura Movsisyan, and Luis Silva who are all capable of playing in a forward position.
Lopez-Espin is primarily a center forward, putting him in contention for minutes with several of the aforementioned players, should Mike Petke see fit to give him playing time with the first team in his rookie season.