Freeport, Illinois — More great news coming as the 2014 product of Loras College’s excellent soccer program, Josh Kutzke, becomes the first ever player signed to Union Dubuque F.C.. Since graduating from Loras, Kutzke, a Freeport native, has remained in Dubuque and active in the local recreational leagues, according to a release. The announcement came last week and marks the first of many for Union Dubuque, who will says they will be announcing more players in the coming weeks.
“It’s definitely an honor to be the first signing for Union Dubuque FC”, Josh told us. “I’ve played soccer for 23 years now and seeing how far the game has come in the US since then is pretty amazing. I think 10 years ago having a semi pro club in a smaller market like Dubuque would have been impossible. So to have this opportunity is pretty awesome and I knew I wanted to play again.”
Manager Jon Denham also looks forward to seeing Kutzke back in competitive action, noting “I had the opportunity to coach Josh at Loras. Everyone in the local soccer community knows that he’s someone who can’t get enough of the ball at his feet. He expressed his commitment to preparing himself for the season very early, and we’re pleased with how excited he is to have a role in launching this club. This, combined with his nose for goal, will help us immensely.”
The Freeport, IL native joins Union Dubuque on a three year amateur contract that will keep him with the Union until the end of the 2020 Fall season.
“There’s been a lot of things/people that have helped me get to this point, Josh says. “My HS coach Nick Namio, College coach at Loras Dan Rothert. Playing for Namio for 4 years really taught me a lot. I still talk to him today and a lot of my best friends today were my teammates in HS soccer. We had some amazing runs from 05-09. Beating Boylan 3-1 is still one of my favorite memories.”
Josh’s mom, Sandra Kutzke, said about this proud moment, “I’ve watched him play since he was 4 yrs old, he’s always had a passion for the game. When he was real young I’d call him my little marathon man as he’d run and run, so soccer was a fitting sport.”
“It’s so great to see your kids loving life”, she added.
Union Dubuque will contest their first league match on the road in Chicago on April 28th, with the home opener scheduled for May 19th against the Des Moines Menace. Season passes as well as individual game tickets are now on sale.
“I’ve really worked hard to get my fitness back the past 8 months”, Josh said. “Going forward I’m just looking forward to playing at a high level again. We’ll see where it goes but I work at McGraw Hill in Dubuque and see myself staying here long term.”
See also: https://www.uniondfc.com/news/firstplayer
Cover photo: https://www.uniondfc.com/news/firstplayer