Since graduating from Turlock High in 2001, Bronil Koochoie has travelled the globe with soccer as his vehicle. After experiencing exotic locals like Sweden, Iran, and Thailand as a professional outdoor player, Koochoie returned home to Turlock last year to try his hand at the indoor version of his beloved game as part of the Turlock Express in the Professional Arena Soccer League.
Now, after helping lead the Express to their second consecutive post-season appearance last season, soccer has again found a new home for the former Bulldog—Texas.
Koochoie will remain in the PASL, but he will don a different jersey and compete in a different conference after being signed to a one year contract as the new forward for the Dallas Sidekicks.
“It’s kind of an overseas feel, the fans see you and they know you. They’re like the Lakers out here. There are more followers for the Sidekicks than FC Dallas,” Koochoie said of the 20 year old team. “The platform that they play on; they’re a big market team, have multiple championships, and a long history. That was a big draw for me. I want to be with the best and play with the best.”
Koochoie was brought in along with All-PASL forward Nestor Hernandez to help generate an explosive offense for the Sidekicks in their second year in the PASL. Hernandez, formerly of the Chicago Mustangs, scored 38 goals last season while Koochoie scored 24.
“Our job is to put the goals away and make assists,” Koochoie said. “The talent on this team is ridiculous.”
Aside from Hernandez, Koochoie joins a nearly-intact team that finished 13-3 and claimed the Central Division Championship in their first season in the PASL. Expectations are high, but Koochoie believes he is in the perfect environment to succeed.
“Nothing short of a championship,” Koochoie said. “That’s the first goal. This year with the additions to the team, we’re looking to go further (in the post-season) than we did last year.”
Koochoie and his new Dallas family begin their journey today against the Wichita B-52’s before travelling to San Diego on November 9 to take on the stalwart Sockers—a team both Dallas and Koochoie are familiar with as San Diego helped eliminate the Express from last season’s playoffs but were also dealt a loss for the first time in 48 games by the Sidekicks.
“I am thankful for the opportunity that Art Pulido gave me last season to play in the PASL. As a result I am very blessed now to be given the opportunity to join the Dallas Sidekicks,” Koochoie said.