The Virginia Tech men’s soccer program made history Thursday when Daniel Pereira was selected by Austin FC as the No. 1 overall pick and Kristo Strickler was selected No. 30 by Houston Dynamo FC in the Major League Soccer SuperDraft 2021.
A midfielder from Roanoke, Pereira became the first No. 1 pick in program history and only the third Virginia Tech student-athlete to be selected first in a professional sports draft, joining Michael Vick and Bruce Smith.
Pereira was part of the 2021 Generation Adidas class, joining Patrick Nyarko as the only other Hokie to receive the honor. Nyarko was selected with the seventh pick in the 2008 MLS Draft.
Pereira is Austin FC’s first pick in franchise history as the club approaches its inaugural playing season in 2021.
An underrated recruit, Pereira established himself as a day-one starter in Blacksburg. In 27 games across two seasons, he scored six goals and recorded six assists. In 2019, Pereira was named to the ACC All-Freshman team.
A midfielder from Hilliard, Ohio, Strickler was selected with the third pick in the second round of the draft (No. 30 overall). A four-year starter for Tech, Strickler’s versatility has led him to various honors, including being named to the VaSID First Team in 2018 and second team All-ACC in both 2018 and 2019.
With 27 career goals, Strickler is ninth all-time in program history for goals scored.
Thursday’s draft marked only the second time two Hokies have been selected in the same MLS SuperDraft (2008) and the first instance in program history of two players being picked in the first two rounds.