May 4, 2009
WASHINGTON, D.C. - In front of a nationally televised audience, former Loyola goalkeeper Milos Kocic made his regular-season MLS debut on Saturday night, helping D.C. United earn a 2-1 win over FC Dallas in damp conditions at RFK Stadium.
It was the second time in 10 days that Kocic received the starting nod in the cage to face FC Dallas. The teams met previously on April 22 in a U.S. Open Cup play-in match, in which United defeated the visitors 2-0, with Kocic pitching his first professional shutout.
This time he was challenged more. After Dallas midfielder Andre Rocha gave his team a stunning lead on a 28th-minute corner kick, Kocic and the United defense locked down the rest of the way. Two goals by United legend Jaime Moreno in the second half propelled United (3-1-3) to the full three points.
"(Milos) manned the box, he punched a couple, I thought he got fouled a couple of times, I don't know that they gave him enough respect coming out, but overall, he manned the box well, told United Head Coach Tom Soehn to DCunited.com. "The guys in front of him have done a really good job too."
Kocic, a second-round selection in the 2009 SuperDraft, is one of three goalkeepers listed on United's roster.
"It's a fight every single day, between us. Everybody can step up and play," said Kocic of United's depth to DC United.com. "You know coaches are making decisions before every game [on] who is going to play. You have to be ready and for me, I just try to push, try to help the team by coming out. I try to come out on every ball and help the team because I know how hard it is for the team when you stay on the line so I try to help them as much as I can."
A native of Leskovac, Serbia, Kocic assembled a stellar career at Loyola from 2006-08, starting every game the last two seasons and leading his team to school-record 37 wins and 29 shutouts over the span.
At the Athletic Department's awards banquet on April 27, Kocic was given the Loyola College Medal of Merit award, which recognizes the top male athlete who has combined academic and athletic excellence during their time at the Evergreen campus. He graduated early this past December from Loyola with a degree in International Business after transferring from St. John's in 2005. He was also named a Second-Team All-American this past season.