The German-born Gressel is the seventh-straight MLS Rookie of the Year to come from the American collegiate system, joining Jordan Morris, Cyle Larin, Tesho Akindele, Dillow Powers, Austin Berry, and CJ Sapong.
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Andy Najar is the last non-collegiate ROY, winning the award after heading from DC United’s Academy directly into the First Team.
The 23-year-old Gressel came to Atlanta via the SuperDraft after a college career at Providence. The right-sided man had five goals and nine assists as a rookie, adding another goal in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
Gressel received better than 53 percent of the vote, 37 points better than second-place finisher Abu Danladi of Minnesota United. Jack Elliott of Philadelphia was third, followed by San Jose’s Nick Lima.