VANCOUVER, B.C. – Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 announced on Thursday that the club had signed center back Francis de Vries. The signing is pending league and federation approval.
De Vries, who claimed the PDL Championship in 2014 and 2016 with the Michigan Bucks, was drafted in the second round (29th overall) by Whitecaps FC in the 2017 MLS SuperDraft. During preseason with Whitecaps FC, de Vries played in all three matches in Wales against Cardiff City, Oxford United, and Bristol City U23 teams.
"Francis is a promising young center back who is very good on the ball," said WFC2 Head Coach Rich Fagan. "He brings a strong pedigree to our group as a two-time PDL champion, and having also spent time in Europe before attending college. We're excited to work with Francis as he continues to develop."
De Vries, 22, played four seasons at Saint Francis University. The native of Christchurch, New Zealand started all 78 of his appearances, scoring 15 goals and recording six assists. His performances saw him twice named a NSCAA Third Team All-American, as well as two-time Northeastern Conference Defender of the Year, and three-time First Team All-Northeastern Conference.
De Vries also excelled for the Bucks, making 32 appearances for the club over the past three seasons. In 2016 he was ranked as the No. 28 prospect in the league as the Bucks took their second championship in three seasons.