The Turlock Express will be re-signing seven players from the team’s 2012 playoff campaign in the Professional Arena Soccer League, Head Coach Art Pulido announced this week.
“Our professionals have been training all summer long and the team is looking stronger than ever. The talent at tryouts this year was fantastic. We feel each one of these promising players will contribute to a successful season,” said Pulido.
A signing event will be held at 7 p.m. Oct. 12, at the home of the Express’ major sponsor, the Turlock Poker Room. Some of the league's best players, playing for Turlock's only professional sports team, will be present for the signing.
“We have Adrian Gutierrez and Arturo Pulido returning to the team this season, both of which were in the top 20 PASL scoring leaders,” Art Pulido said.
Gutierrez was in the league's top 10 scoring leaders last year, with a total of 18 goals and 24 assists. As the backbone of the team, the talented striker was a key contributor to the team’s successes. Gutierrez will be “a force to be reckoned with this season,” the team says.
Midfielder Arturo Pulido has been with the Express since its first season in the PASL. The powerhouse lefty ended the 2012-13 season with 14 goals and 12 assists, making him an invaluable asset to the team. He played for California State University, Stanislaus for four years prior to joining the Express.
“Additionally, we have talented defenders, Martyn Arista and Jesse Horta, returning, which will maintain our strong defense,” Art Pulido said.
Also with the Express from the very beginning, Arista's spectacular performances throughout last season proved his status as an elite defender. Arista played for the Turlock Express Premier team before continuing with the Express.
Horta, returning for a second season, will be a significant contributor to the Express defense. He participated in only in a fraction of matches last season due to a knee injury, but the team is hopeful that he will return in full force. Horta played two years for California State University, Fullerton and one year for CSU Stanislaus.
The Express have also re-signed superstar goalkeeper Mitchell Watson for the upcoming season. Watson’s overwhelming talent and confidence was an amazing positive impact on the team as a whole, the team said. He played for North Carolina State for four years, where he was ranked fourth in NC State history with a total of 305 saves. Additionally, Watson played for the under-18 U.S. National Team.
Javier Rosales from Woodland, Calif., will be goalkeeping as well. Rosales played for four years with CSU Stanislaus, and was also the goalkeeper for the Stanislaus United Turlock Express team, which was the first U.S. Club Soccer team that qualified for the U.S. Open Cup. The Express are extremely confident in Rosales’s skills in goal.
Lastly, the Express have signed lightning-fast midfielder Samuel Saldate for a third season. He recorded 14 goals and 7 assists during the last PASL season, with his speed constantly opening up opportunities for the Express offense.
The Turlock Poker Room, where the signing event will occur at 7 p.m. Oct. 12, is located at 2321 W. Main St.
The Turlock Express Play at the Turlock Indoor Soccer Arena, 500 S. Center St. For tickets, visit the Arena or call (209) 634-5181.