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See the skinny looking kid? No. 8, right in the middle? That is none other than West York native Alex Shinsky, pictured here before a match at the U-17 World Cup in Nigeria last fall.

As I wrote about in today's paper, Shinsky is quite the soccer prospect. The West York junior has verbally committed to play soccer at Maryland in two falls (the Terrapins are widely considered one of the nation's top soccer programs). The Web site topdrawersoccer.com rates Shinsky as the top high school prospect in the Class of 2011.

We've seen our share of sports standouts come through York County. But to have somebody ranked No. 1 in the nation in their respective sport? You don't see that every day.

Shinsky has pro aspirations. His mother, Justine Kloske, said her son has received offers from clubs in Brazil hoping to secure his services. Agents have also called hoping to represent the talented midfielder.

For now Shinsky said he's committed to playing college soccer (though he's not sure for how long). The 17-year-old hopes to fulfill his high school credit requirements in time to start taking classes at Maryland next January. "He wants to play in the MLS," Kloske told me. "If he starts in January, he'll be able to get as many semesters as he can."

Once again, check out the whole story on Shinsky to get a better perspective. I've also posted another photo from the U-17 World Cup below (courtesy of Justine Kloske).

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