Joe Ruiz will return for his second season with the Tulsa Athletic as Ruiz becomes the third signing for the club for the 2019 season.
During his first season for the Athletic in 2018, Ruiz appeared in all 11 matches and started the final 10 contests in the midfield. He totaled one goal against FC Wichita early in the eighth minute of the match. For the season, Ruiz played 890 minutes in the 11 contests.
“Joe Ruiz is a technically gifted player with an incredible engine,” Sonny Dalesandro, co-owner of Tulsa Athletic said. “His tireless work ethic and solid positioning makes him a joy to play alongside and a nightmare to play against. He is also tremendously versatile as he played three or four different positions for us last season. He’s a future pro, and we are fortunate to have him back.”
Ruiz started in all 17 matches during his most recent collegiate season in fall 2018 as a sophomore at NCAA Division I University of Tulsa. In the midfield, Ruiz paced the Golden Hurricane with four goals and added one assist for nine points in the 2018 season. Ruiz posted two game-winning goals, including the game-winner at No. 15 Michigan in a 2-1 victory for TU. He also registered the game-winning tally in the win over city rival Oral Roberts.
In his freshman campaign, Ruiz started in 13 contests and was named to the American Athletic Conference all-rookie team. He scored a goal against Denver. As a freshman, he was tabbed as TU’s “Man of the Match” against UConn, Saint Louis and Cincinnati.
A Bartlesville, Oklahoma native, Ruiz was a three-year letterwinner at Bartlesville High School where he tallied 14 goals and 12 assists in three seasons. He was selected to the All-VYPE Northeast Oklahoma Soccer Team. Ruiz played club soccer for Blitz United, posting 20 goals and 30 assists.