CHICAGO (Friday, Aug. 13, 2004) - The U.S. Paralympic Soccer Team has announced that it will hold its last training camp prior to the Paralympic Games from August 17-22 at Moorpark College in Moorpark, Calif. After this camp, the team will gather in Washington, D.C., on September 8 to go through team processing before departing for Athens on the U.S. Paralympic charter flight with the rest of the U.S. Paralympic Delegation on September 10.
Head coach Jay Hoffman will bring in the full 12-man roster for these final preparations.
The U.S. was drawn into Group B along with Brazil, Russia and the Netherlands. The team will open the Paralympic Games on September 19, 2004, and continue group play on September 21 and 23. The semifinals will be played on September 25 and the medal games are Monday, Sept. 27. These matches will be played at the field hockey stadium in the Helliniko Olympic Sports Complex.
The team’s final preparations will take place during this training camp, and the schedule has been designed to simulate the first few days of the team’s schedule in Greece. Three scrimmages vs. local teams are on the docket, and the team will also train on days of games and twice on days without games.
The team qualified for the Paralympic Games with a sixth-place finish at the Paralympic World Championship played in Buenos Aires, Argentina from Oct. 10-22, 2003. The top eight teams in the 11-team tournament all qualified for the 2004 Paralympic Games.
The U.S. went 2-2 in group play, qualifying for a fifth-place placement game against Ireland and thus guaranteeing the team a spot in Athens in 2004. The U.S. lost their placement game to Ireland 3-1 on Oct. 20 to finish the tournament with a 2-3 record. Ten of the 12 players from qualifying were named to the final roster for the Paralymics, with Derek Arneaud and Chris Wolf as the most recent additions to the squad.
Paralympic soccer is played with seven players per side, across 30-minute halves, with athletes qualifying for the competition by having Cerebral Palsy, Traumatic Brain Disorder or having survived a stroke.
No. Pos. Name Hometown Occupation
7 M/F Derek Arneaud E.Stroudsberg, Pa High School Teacher/College Soccer Coach
5 F Josh Blue Denver, Colo. Stand Up Comedian
18 GK Keith Johnson Anchorage, Alaska Works at a car dealership
8 M Tom Latsch Cleveland, Ohio Full Time College Student
14 D Jon McCullough Washington, D.C. Home Depot Olympic Jobs Program
16 M Josh McKinney Princeton, W.V. Full Time College Student
17 M/D Mike Peters Seattle, Wash. College Professor/Completing his Doctorate
9 M/D Jason Slemons Eagle River, Alaska Working on his masters in mathematics
2 D John Theobald Syracuse, N.Y. High School counselor
15 D Chris Wolf Gainesville, Fla. Full Time College Student
10 F Eli Wolff Boston, Mass. Program Manager - Disability in Sport
3 M/D David Woosnam Roswell, Ga. Home Depot Olympic Jobs Program
Head Coach: Jay Hoffman
Assistant Coach: Mike Haas
Sports Psychologist: Dan Freigang
Strength Coach: Ernie Rimer
Trainer: Dave Freeseman