By FRANCO PANIZO
FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Dom Dwyer did not know he was heading to the 2012 MLS Combine until a day before the event kicked off, but that did not stop him from having a decent showing at the event that he capped off with a goal.
Dwyer helped adiZero (blue) to a 3-1 win over Prime (green) on Tuesday morning, scoring an insurance goal in the 52nd minute of the game when he pounced on a rebound and knocked the ball into the back of the net. That goal was just part of Dwyer's notable outing, which saw him play an active role on the right side of adiZero's attack.
That performance was his best of the combine and came after a shaky first day and a better second day.
"It was better. Still not where it needs to be," said Dwyer, a member of this year's Generation adidas class. "Wasn't quite as prepared for this as I should be. I only found out the day before that I was signing, I was coming (to the combine). I was trying to rest a few little niggling injuries and stuff, but it was better. I enjoyed it and we won the game."
The 5-foot-9, 180-pound Dwyer may not have been at his best throughout the combine, but he did put together a strong season in his first year with South Florida. There, he scored 16 goals and has two assists in 21 games for a Bulls team that reached the quarterfinals of the College Cup tournament.
Dwyer's nose for goal earned him a semifinals nomination for the 2011 Hermann Trophy as well as a Generation adidas deal, which he agreed to just hours before the combine kicked off.
His goal-scoring instincts were not on prime display since the combine opener, but Dwyer believes he improved as it wore on.
"It's gotten better each day for the team and me personally," said Dwyer. "Coaches told me it was good the first day, second day it was much better and today it was really good. I was playing a little bit out of position on the right, but I liked it, I could cut inside, it was good fun."
Dwyer, who was born in London, England, mixed it up on the right flank on Tuesday morning. At times he would attack his defenders head on, other times he would cut inside and look for a shot or teammate to pass to, and on at least one occasion, he whipped a cross into the box.
None of that may have felt as good to him as the goal he scored in the second half of the match.
"It was a nice relief," said Dwyer. "Been getting everything apart from the goal, but finally got a goal and could have had a couple others."
Dwyer's potential and Generation adidas standing make him one of the more intriguing prospects out of this draft class, so it should not be surprising if he is taken in the top ten on Thursday.
Dwyer has no prefence as to where he winds up, and now all he will do is calmy wait to see which team selects him as he begins the next chapter in his career.
"I'm relaxed, really," said Dwyer. "You can't do anymore. You show that you can play, and you've just got to sit down and enjoy the day Thursday and just go from there."