Griffins newcomers Maheshe and Jeteshi coming in off FC Edmonton experience

Egzon Jeteshi, left and Ousman Maheshe will add firepower to the Griffins' attack this season after being with FC Edmonton in the Canadian Premier League (Jefferson Hagen photo).
Egzon Jeteshi, left and Ousman Maheshe will add firepower to the Griffins' attack this season after being with FC Edmonton in the Canadian Premier League (Jefferson Hagen photo).

Jefferson Hagen
MacEwan Athletics

EDMONTON – A year ago, Chance Carter made the decision to play university after pro, joining the Griffins following a successful foray with FC Edmonton.

In 2022, two more players are doing the same thing. Joining Carter on a promising roster of MacEwan men's soccer players are Ousman Maheshe and Egzon Jeteshi, who were both with the Eddies over the summer.

As in the case with Carter, who became a defensive rock for the Griffins in his rookie U SPORTS season, Maheshe and Jeteshi are set to bring that pro standard experience to MacEwan.

"They'll both definitely be impact players right away for us," said head coach Adam Loga. "They're attacking players and will hopefully create many opportunities and success in our attacking third. 

"Obviously, coming from being full time with FC in the CPL, they're going to be coming from a very professional environment and a high standard of play, so they'll bring more than just their ability on the pitch. Having that professionalism and being at a standard that a lot of lads want to get to will lend itself well in training and with the program."

Maheshe saw action in one game with FC Edmonton this past season.

"It was nerve-wracking when the coach said 'get warm,' " he said of getting the call as a substitution against Pacific FC on May 14. "I was dealing with an injury, so it made me more nervous, as well. I went on and once I started running, it felt calm. After the game, I was like 'wow, I made my pro debut.' "

Maheshe's turn with FC Edmonton came after a prolific first post-secondary season with the NAIT Ooks in 2021 where he scored 10 goals in six games, tops in the entire Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference.

Both of those experiences will give the forward a leg up heading into his first season of Canada West.

"I'm still getting familiar to the team," said the Goma, Congo native, who grew up in Edmonton. "I don't know a lot of players and how they play, so I'm just trying to sort out my connections with the team, the chemistry – build that with these guys – and then we'll look forward to the games."

Jeteshi was also with FC Edmonton over the summer, but didn't see action. He comes to MacEwan familiar with several players as a member of Loga's 2019 Western Canada Summer Games team with fellow Griffins rookies Ali Blaybel and Manny Kanu and former Griffin Ali Yildiz.

"I've played with these guys before, I'm happy that they're here," said the midfielder, who also spent some time at BTB Academy with Blaybel and Kanu, as well as fellow Griffins recruits Yusupha Bangura and David Sithole. "We're all feeling welcome and we all know each other, so there's a connection on the field."

Adding to the familiarity with Loga and the program, his older brother Ibrahim (Ibo) Jeteshi played for the Griffins in 2019 and offered a sterling recommendation.

"He told me the coach is good, the players are good, everyone's respected here, so he recommended it to me," said Egzon Jeteshi. "I'm very happy to be here.

"He basically taught me the game – him and my dad," he added of his father Xhavid. "My brother's always coaching me from the sideline, telling me what to do, so I learned a lot from him."