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Chris Kamrani
Chris Kamrani covers Real Salt Lake for the Tribune.

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Real Salt Lake's first pick in 2012 appears a winner on and off the field

It's way, really way, too early to expect that Real Salt Lake's first-round draft pick Enzo Martinez will contribute anything more than another body on the reserve squad. However, all indicators from the Chapel Hill, N.C., area is not only a quality player, but a terrific person off the pitch as well.

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Martinez, 21, is an attacking midfielder who was expected to go higher in the draft. The 5-foot-7 junior for the 2011 NCAA champions was born in Montevideo, Uruguay, but immigrated to Rock Hill, S.C., when he was 10 years old.

Take this comment from a reader:

"I'm a Rock Hill resident and close friend of the Martinez family. You guys are getting not only an incredible player, but an incredible person and asset to the community. As an FYI, this young man the past 3 years (along with his longtime girlfriend from high school) has come home during Christmas Break at UNC to start and organize his charity event 'kicking4acause', benefiting the Rock Hill Children's Attention Home. Coming from a very modest background, it was his way of giving back to the community that has helped him and his family. He raised over $2500 this past year in addition to a toy drive that brought in several boxes worth of toys to donate. He also has spent countless days during his summers training young kids in the sport he loves. Truly a class act, and we as a community are proud to have had him be a part."

RSL coach Jason Kreis added this:

"He’s a fit for our team. He’s a technically-gifted player, a guy that works extremely hard and, more important than both of those things, is that fact that he’s a fantastic kid that just wants to succeed at this level in the worst way."

But the roster building is not complete. Tuesday is the four-round MLS Supplemental Draft. Then, on Jan. 25, players report to Salt Lake City for entrance physicals and five days of training before heading to Arizona."



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