BOTH PLAYERS ATTENDED THE OWLS INVITATIONAL CAMP DURING THE 2022 PRE-SEASON
PAPILLION, Neb. (February 18, 2022) – Union Omaha announced today the signing of University of Nebraska-Omaha soccer product Hugo Kametani along with Ryen Jiba pending league and federation approval.
Kametani, the Kashima, Japan native, has spent the last two seasons playing in Omaha at the collegiate level. Featuring and starting in all 17 matches during the 2021 season, Kametani, who played forward during his collegiate career, recorded a shot in every match and earned multiple Offensive Player of the Week awards.
“It has been so great to follow Hugo’s development over the last year locally in Omaha,” said Union Omaha Head Coach Jay Mims. “Coach Warming and UNO have done such a great job with him and we are so thrilled to continue his progress and help him reach an even higher level. He will fit in so well with our current group.”
“I’d like to thank Union Omaha for giving me such a great opportunity,” said Kametani. “I’m so excited to start my professional career in Omaha. I can’t wait to play in front of the Union Omaha fans!”
Phonetic pronunciation of name: [YOOGO KAH-MEH-TAH-NI]
Weight: 150 lbs
Born: Kashima, Japan
Hometown: Kashima, Japan
Jiba, hailing from Salt Lake City, Utah, joins Union Omaha by way of Salt Lake Community College. While also playing for Park City Red Wolves SC in USL League 2, the South Sudan national earned regional first team honors three times and was the 2019 NJCAA Region 18 Player of the Year with the Bruins. He was also named to the 2019 Best 11 team which honors the best 11 players in the nation during the USYS National Championship Series.
“I first saw Ryen about four years ago and have been tracking him ever since,” said Mims. “He is a dynamic player who can attack and defend. I am excited to put Ryen in a learning environment where he can grow as a player, and I cannot wait to get started coaching him!”
Phonetic pronunciation of name: [RY-EN JEE-BUH]
Weight: 135 lbs
Hometown: Salt Lake City, Utah
The 2022 League One Championship defending campaign is set to begin on April 9 with a visit to Forward Madison FC. The home opener at Werner Park is set for April 23 vs. USL1 newcomer Central Valley Fuego FC. Season tickets and undated voucher packs for the 2022 season are currently available via UnionOmaha.com or the Werner Park Ticket Office by calling 402-738-5100.
ABOUT UNION OMAHA
Union Omaha, the 2021 USL League One Champion, is the only professional soccer team in the state of Nebraska. USL League One is a United States Soccer Federation-sanctioned professional men’s soccer league that occupies the third tier of the American soccer landscape, below USL Championship (tier two) and Major League Soccer (tier one). Union Omaha plays its home matches at Werner Park in Sarpy County, also home to the Omaha Storm Chasers of Minor League Baseball. The team is led by General Manager Peter Marlette in the front office and by Head Coach Jay Mims on the field.