MINNEAPOLIS - The win was big for FC Dallas, but the night was bigger for Homegrown Kris Reaves.
“Super, super emotional,” the 22-year-old said after his professional debut in the 1-0 win. “I’ve dreamt about this for a long time. I came into the Academy when I was 16, so I’ve been waiting for this day for a long time. It’s a really special feeling and just thank you to the teammates and coaches and everyone in the organization for helping make this day come true for me.”
Coming off sports hernia surgery in April and having returned to training just two weeks ago, Reaves played 78 minutes in his first start making one tackle, four interceptions, four clearances and seven recoveries.
“I was happy for Kris,” head coach Oscar Pareja said. “Kris did an excellent job today with such a personality and knowing he came back from injury not too long ago. We haven’t been able to prepare him that well and that’s why the last 10 minutes cost him physically. During the game, his behaviors were really good.”
The defender was one of five Homegrowns to start in Minnesota, tying a club and MLS record. Being surrounded by so many familiar faces made the new stage a little easier.
“We all have been training in the same system for a long time now, so we grew up knowing how to play with each other and then trained together every day,” he said. “I’m comfortable with the guys out there on the field, so it was an easy transition.”
“Great performance, first, by Kris. It’s not easy to play your first game on the road in a place like this, and It thought he was fantastic,” captain Matt Hedges said. “I see it every day in training on how good they are. They just need to mature a little bit and they’ll start getting on the field, getting more minutes and contributing to the team. And you saw today, they were all good.”