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SBI MLS Rookie of the Month: Tony Cascio

Cascio (Getty Images)

As it turns out, Tony Cascio's collegiate production is translating quite nicely into the first season of his professional career.

With starts in all four of the Colorado Rapids' games, consistent and influential play on the wing and a game-winning goal on the road to boot, Cascio earned SBI's first Rookie of the Month honors of the 2012 season. Cascio's play has been one of the contributing factors to the Rapids' 3-1 start, and he'll face his biggest test of his first season this weekend against RSL in the clubs' first Rocky Mountain Cup match of the season.

The former UConn star and Arizona native edged out New England's Kelyn Rowe and D.C. United's Nick DeLeon to win the honors for the season's opening month. Rowe and DeLeon both had compelling cases.

Rowe started all four games for the Revolution and was an integral part of the club's dismantling of the Los Angeles Galaxy over the weekend, scoring his first professional goal. DeLeon, meanwhile, had two goals and an assist in three games, and he tortured FC Dallas defenders last Friday night with a complete performance in his second career start. 

Other rookies who stood out in the season's opening month were Real Salt Lake midfielder Sebastian Velasquez, Chivas USA forward Casey Townsend, Portland Timbers centerback Andrew Jean-Baptiste, Columbus Crew midfielder Kirk Urso and New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Ryan Meara.


What did you think of Cascio's month? Who do you think was the top rookie in March?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. That’s why I’m fine with Cascio for Rookie of the Month. But if Dudar can maintain his calming influence in the back, and our offensive players continue at this rate, we’ll be a playoff team.

    DeLeon has played well enough to bench Chris Pontius. Nuff said.

  2. Thank you SBI for finally respecting the ‘Pids.

    Cascio has held the team up in the absence of Jamie Smith and terrible play of Brian Mullan. I haven’t seen De Leon play and a bit bias in Colorado’s favor but he has surprisingly been one of our top 3 players so far this year. Can’t wait to see him vs. FSL

  3. Tony still has some learning curves, like fading in and out of games and recognizing counter attacking opportunities quicker, but make no mistake his impact has been felt with the Rapids. He’s quite confident on the ball and makes pretty smart decisions. For instance, he can stay hugged on the sideline and pump in a good cross or cut in on goal. He recognizes and adapts to the space which is unlike many wingers who just use speed to cut inside. Like I said, Tony has a ways to go but he is making improvements every week. It’s exciting to see here in Denver. By the end of the season I think the Rapids can come away with two unexpected award in Rookie of the Year with Tony and Newcomer of the Year with Jamie Castrillon, who’s been more of reason the rapids are 3-1.

  4. Uh, Andy Najar won Rookie of the Year in 2010 when D.C. United was the worst team in the league. Not that I think DCU will be bad this year. Most of the time the rookie of the year has gone to a bad team because normally young players get more playing time there. Not to say that is always the case. CJ Sapong won it last year and Kansas City made the playoffs the other two finalists, Nagbe and Kitchen came from teams that missed the playoffs

  5. DCU has one win. DeLeon’s been superb, but you’re not gonna get RotM honors on a team with that current record.

  6. Didn’t even know Ives was aware of a soccer team in colorado. Tony has been great to watch. Cant wait for Casey to get back to playing. Watching a 4-3-3 with Omar up top is frustrating.

  7. Right on. ‘Bout time Tony got some credit.

    As for the shorts, Larentowicz must have taken Tony under his wing.

  8. I think we can at least take away from this that year’s rookie class may be quite special . . . a lot of impact players right out of the gate, and that’s pretty exciting.


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