Courtesy of Erin Harvey, Wilmington SID

NEW CASTLE, DE -- Wilmington University is pleased to announce that men’s soccer standout Sargbah Tarpeh (Overbrook HS/Philadelphia, PA) has signed a professional contract to play with the Puerto Rico Islanders of the United States Soccer Federation (USSF). 

A National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) and NCAA Daktronics First Team All-America selection, Tarpeh, a senior forward, was named Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC), Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC), and NCAA Daktronics East Region Player of the Year.  He was a First Team All-Region selection, and a four-time First Team All-CACC award winner. 

Tarpeh was the catalyst of the Wildcat offense and led the team in almost every offensive category, including goals (21), assists (11), and game winning goals (7). He also led the CACC in points, goals, assists, shots, points per game and assists per game. His offensive contributions ranked 6th in Division II in points per game and assists per game, and 7th in the nation in goals per game. His 54 points this season were a single-season CACC record.

“I am very excited to start my professional playing career with the Puerto Rico Islanders.  I want to thank everyone at Wilmington University, especially my coaches and teammates, for all of their support and encouragement during my collegiate career”, stated Tarpeh.  “I enjoyed my four years as a Wildcat, and I am thrilled to begin this new journey in my life.”

The Islanders are a Puerto Rican professional soccer team based in Bayamon, Puerto Rico.  They were founded in 2003, and play in the USL Division of the USSF D2 Pro League, the second tier of the American Soccer Pyramid.  The team plays its home games at Juan Ramon Loubriel Stadium, where they have played since 2004.  They are coached by Northern Irishman Colin Clarke, and the squad’s colors are orange and white.   The USL season runs from mid-April until the beginning of October.

“Having Sargbah sign a professional contract is a huge accomplishment for our program and for the University as well”, stated head coach Nick Papanicolas.  “He is an example of how hard work can pay off.  I am extremely happy for Sargbah and wish him the best of luck as he pursues his dream of playing at a high level professionally.”

Tarpeh’s efforts helped Wilmington end the 2009 campaign with a stellar 19-3-1 overall record, including a perfect 11-0 mark in the CACC. The season saw many highs, including the highest national ranking in school history (9th), highest regional ranking in program history (1st), and six members honored with All-Conference awards and All-Region awards, along with five members earning All-America accolades.