Thomas Gardner 2016 USSDA academy championship final
Credit: Stephanie Romero

Three former 'Caps selected in the inaugural Canadian Premier League U SPORTS Draft

The Canadian Premier League (CPL) held their inaugural U SPORTS collegiate draft on Monday, and three players who have come through the Whitecaps FC Academy were selected by local side Pacific FC.

The new Victoria club picked three midfielders, starting with Thomas Gardner (sixth overall), followed by Zach Verhoven (ninth overall), and concluding with Nick Fussell (20th overall). All three players played their college soccer at UBC. Gardner and Verhoven both also played in the PDL with local side TSS FC Rovers. 

“We’re familiar with these players. I’ve worked with them and watched them progress,” noted assistant coach James Merriman, himself a former coach in the Whitecaps FC Academy. “There were a few other very interesting players in the draft but we’re happy with the players we got.”

For more information on the selections from the CPL-U SPORTS Draft, visit