Orlando City SC has signed third-round SuperDraft pick Earl Edwards Jr. after a surprisingly effective preseason for the young goalkeeper.
The 23-year-old Edwards has appeared in four preseason games with City, allowing only one goal from the penalty spot. He has looked confident behind the Lions defense and is a loud vocal communicator in his box.
"Earl has shown great potential during the team's training and friendlies so far," said Head Coach Adrian Heath in a club release. "His skills and excellent work ethic will benefit the team going forward, and we are excited to continue working with him."
Orlando City took the 6-foot-3, 205-pound Edwards with the 43rd overall pick in the third round of the 2015 MLS SuperDraft in January. The UCLA product captained his team for three seasons, starting 44 consecutive matches for the Bruins in 2013 and 2014.
He was a two-time All-Pac 12 first team selection and has appeared for the United States in the U-17 World Cup and with U.S. youth teams at all levels from U-14 to U-20.
The emergence of Edwards provides outstanding depth between the sticks for the Lions and it could mean that Josh Ford or Donovan Ricketts may be moved when Tally Hall returns from his ACL injury. Certainly it gives Orlando City options with its personnel.