Peninsula Daily News
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Ash Apollon has decided to leave the Pirates a year early to turn professional.
Apollon, who came to Peninsula College from Portland, has signed with Bangkok FC of the Thailand Premier League.
In his one season with Pirates, Apollon led the NWAACC in assists with 15 and was the conference's fourth leading scorer with 16 goals.
He was training and playing with the Puget Sound Gunners this spring before making the decision to turn pro.
“Following some impressive displays for ISC's U-23 PDL team, Ash Apollon has been asked to tryout at a professional club,” said Jimmy Ball, ISC Gunners' head coach and director of football
“We are proud to have been able to help Ash with this opportunity and we wish him all the very best of luck.”
Peninsula College head men's coach and director of soccer Andrew Chapman has some big shoes to fill replacing Apollon, as an athlete and also as an outstanding student.
“Ash was a true pleasure to have around,” Chapman said. “He had a great fall season for us, scoring the game-winning goal in our college semifinal game.
“He is so strong in other avenues in his life we expect him to do really well.”
Apollon, originally of Boston, was living in Portland, Ore., when Chapman found him and brought him to Peninsula.
“Being recruited to Peninsula College was one of the luckiest days of my life, and choosing to go there was one of the best decisions I've ever made,” Apollon said.
“The program speaks for itself. It is indeed the best soccer program in the NWAACC.
“Peninsula helped me shape my perspective in life, gave me a sense of direction.”
Apollon went on to praise the coaching staff.
“By far one of the best coaching staffs I've had the chance to work with,” he said.
“They helped me develop my game a lot, especially tactically, but mentally and academically they were always there to make sure I'm [on] the right track.
“It honestly did not take me long to find comfort and happiness at PC, because coach Chapman, coach [Tim] Tucker, coach [Kanyon] Anderson and the rest of the staff made me feel like family.”
Apollon helped the Pirates became the first team in school history to go unbeaten, finishing with 21 wins and two ties as they their second consecutive NWAACC championship.
They also finished 2013 ranked No. 7 in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Junior College Division I poll.
“With no hesitation I have recommended many of my friends to consider this program; it was life changing for me,” Apollon said.
“I was so happy for being able to contribute to the program's second soccer championship in a row.
“Now that I'm gone, I wish PC the best of luck, you will always be family.”