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Columbus Crew SC Selects Forward Kyle Parker with 31st Overall Selection

The Black & Gold began to add forward depth late in the second round of the MLS SuperDraft.

Robert Duyos-USA TODAY Sports

With two picks already in the books, Columbus Crew SC continued to add young talent in Thursday's MLS SuperDraft. The Black & Gold selected two midfielders to begin the day, taking Rodrigo Saravia with the 19th overall selection followed by Chase Minter to begin the second round.

At pick number 31 - the 11th pick in the second round - Gregg Berhalter switched from drafting midfielders to taking a forward when the club selected Kyle Parker out of UNC-Charlotte.

Parker established himself as a good goal scorer in his time with the 49ers, winning the Conference USA Golden Boot twice in four seasons.

As a sophomore and junior, Parker was an integral part of Charlotte's Conference USA Tournament championship teams. He helped them reach the NCAA Tournament in each of those years, including a 10 seed in his third season.

As a senior, Parker was named to the NSCAA All-American team and Conference USA MVP for the second consecutive year. He led Conference USA in points (27), goals (12), and game-winning goals (5), which were all top-25 nationally.

Parker set a 49ers record during his final collegiate campaign, scoring in seven consecutive games.

The forward's illustrious college career came to an end early in the 2015 Conference USA Tournament, but he finished fourth all-time in shots on goal (81), tied for fourth in goals (34), seventh in points and shot attempts (83 and 173 respectively), and tied for 11th in game-winning goals (7) for UNC-Charlotte.

This selection makes Parker just the second 49er ever selected in the SuperDraft after Donnie Smith was taken in the second round by the New England Revolution in 2013.

Parker will look to add depth to the forward position that has become depleted after the announcement that Jack McInerney was traded to the Portland Timbers. Fifth-year pro Aaron Schoenfeld is out of contract with the club, but head coach Gregg Berhalter has said the Black & Gold are still in talks with the striker.