The Atlanta Silverbacks announced Matt O’Toole and Josh Smith will play for the team during the 2006 season. O’Toole and Smith, both with two years under their belt in the USL First Division, reported for preseason on April 1 and have been training with the full squad in preparation for the upcoming season.
Matt O’Toole, 5-9, 170, joins the Silverbacks from the Richmond Kickers, the 2005 USL First Division Runners-Up. O’Toole spent the past two seasons with the Kickers, playing in four games in 2004 and nine games in 2005. He also took his love of the game to the sidelines as a coach during the off-season; O’Toole has worked as an assistant coach at the University of Richmond and Wheaton College. O’Toole also played for the Carolina Dynamo and the Connecticut Wolves. The Providence College graduate was a four-year starter at his alma mater, earning All-New England All-Star honors in 2001.
"I'm happy to be a part of the Silverbacks’ organization; it’s going in the right direction with the stadium and the commitment to the players. We have a good group of guys and I’m excited for the season to start,” commented O’Toole.
Josh Smith, 5-11, 165, spent the past two seasons with the Silverbacks’ longtime rivals – the Charleston Battery. Smith began his professional career in Charleston for the 2004 season when he played in 18 games (starting 10). Smith more than doubled his minutes in the 2005 season when he played in 27 games (starting 22). Smith, a product of Trinity University, was a three-time All-American and led the team through an undefeated season (24-0) which ended in Trinity’s first ever NCAA D3 National Championship. Smith was named 2003 NCAA Division 3 Player of the Year. Smith says he’s happy to be in Atlanta,
“I’m really excited to be a part of a program that’s on the way up. The team atmosphere here is great and we all mesh really well together. I think we’ve put together a solid squad that has a great chance at making a good run at the playoffs and the championship.”
While the Silverbacks have signed twelve new players, the team has retained nine players from last year’s squad: Joe Afful, Antonio De la Torre, Adilson Delima, David Hayes, Tony McManus, Alex Pineda-Chacon, Rodrigo Rios, Fabian Dawkins, and Machel Millwood.
The 2006 Atlanta Silverbacks Men will take the field in Puerto Rico on April 21 to begin the regular season. The team begins the home season on June 3 at Atlanta Silverbacks Park against the Charleston Battery. Season tickets are on sale now with packages starting as low as $140. For ticket information call 1-866-GO-BACKS.
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