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USL Roundup: FC Cincinnati signs new striker

By Stephanie Fraley / Louisville City FC, 02/17/17, 9:45AM EST

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Baye Djiby Fall figures to take over former MVP Sean Okoli's role.

FC Cincinnati has found its successor to Sean Okoli, the 2016 United Soccer League MVP who moved on to Major League Soccer this season.

Louisville City FC’s top rival club signed veteran forward Baye Djiby Fall out of FC Irtysh Pavlodar. Fall scored 2 goals last season in Kazakhstan Premier League play.

“He brings a great deal of international experience and will provide a strong presence in front of the goal,” said FC Cincinnati Coach John Harkes. “Scoring goals is an art form, and we are thrilled that in Djiby, we have a player who is hungry to score.”

Fall, 31, also has experience with Turkish side Karsiyaka SK, two seasons with Danish club Randers FC, as well as two years with German club Gruether Furth. He made additional stops in Belgium, Russia and Norway.

Fall, who was born in Senegal, made two appearances for the national team in 2009.

Voted Player of the Year in Denmark in 2007 and 2009, Fall received an identical award in 2010 while playing in Norway. During his time loaned out to Norwegian club Molde FK, Fall led the the league in goals with 16 in 28 appearances.

Three new additions for Richmond

The Richmond Kickers, another Eastern Conference club, this week announced they’ve signed three new players: defender Evan Lee, midfielder Patrick McCann and goalkeeper Alex Wimmer.

Lee signed with the Kickers after spending his rookie season with FC Cincinnati. Named the club’s most-improved player, he made 14 appearances, playing 323 minutes and contributing to eight shutouts. 

McCann most recently played for the League of Ireland’s Slugo Rovers, where he registered 1 goal in 10 appearances. The club finished fifth in its league.

Wimmer, another with international experience, has played in Sweden’s Division 2 and 3 leagues, and also spent time on trial with England’s Everton and West Bromwich Albion. 

Rhinos sign two

The Rochester Rhinos continued to build their roster this week with the additions of midfielder Jordan Dover and attacking midfielder Rayane Boukemia.

Dover, who played collegiately for the University of Green Bay-Milwaukee, spent the past season competing for Durham United FA in League1 Ontario, where he made 16 appearances and recorded 1 goal and 2 assists. Dover ranked fourth on the team in minutes played.

Boukemia, a former standout in the PDL for Reading United AC, recorded four goals and three assists in nine appearances in 2016 as the side won the Mid Atlantic Division in the PDL. He starred in college for Division II Southern New Hampshire University, the same school as former LouCity forward Kenny Doublette.

Wheeler returns to City Islanders

The Harrisburg City Islanders will return forward Aaron Wheeler, the former Professional Development League MVP, for 2017 USL season. Wheeler’s previous professional experience came with the Wilmington Hammerheads FC and Philadelphia Union.

Wheeler’s 2016 season ended early due to injury, but he was a force when available. He scored 5 goals and tallied 1 assist in 13 appearances for the club.

"Aaron was a big part of our success early,” said City Islanders Coach Bill Becher. “Unfortunately, he was injured midway through the season. Losing him kept us from making the playoffs. If he stays healthy this year, I think we will certainly be a playoff team. We expect big things from Aaron this coming season."