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Resource Center: U.S. Paralympic Team Opens Training, Prepares for Athens Paralympics


RESOURCE CENTER - February 26, 2004

As part of our continuing effort to service and educate our membership, each Thursday U.S. Soccer will provide an informative article from one of its departments. Once a week, we bring you an article/paper/essay that will hopefully enhance your enjoyment and knowledge of the game of soccer - on and off the field.

This month the Membership Services Department provides an update on the U.S. Men’s Paralympic Soccer Team, which will be heading to Athens this fall for the 2004 Paralympic Games.

U.S. PARALYMPIC SOCCER TEAM TRAINS IN CHULA VISTA, CALIF.,
IN PREPARATION FOR THE 2004 ATHENS PARALYMPICS

Head Coach Jay Hoffman Calls 14 Players into First Camp of 2004

The U.S. Paralympic Soccer Team began a five-day training camp this week at the ARCO Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif., as the team prepares for the 2004 Paralympic Games which will be played in Athens this summer from Sept. 19-27 at the Helliniko Olympic Complex.

A total of 14 players have been called into camp by head coach Jay Hoffman, including four players who are training with the team for the first time. This is the team's first event since qualifying for the Paralympic Games last October at the World Championship. The squad also faced Brazil in a trio of matches at U.S. Soccer's National Training Center at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., last August.

Members of the team's 20-member player pool will also be eligible for a second U.S. training camp being staged from March 13-21, 2004. That camp will include an open trial for the team in which new players are being identified on a continuing basis. Qualifying players can join the pool at any time until May 16, at which time the team's final player pool must be submitted for a player to be eligible for participation in Greece this summer.

"It is great to be back at it," said Hoffman. "This is our first camp of the year and the beginning of our final preparation for Athens. For me, it is also a chance to see some new players and to get our regular players back into the swing of things after a little bit of a layoff. Our camp has been great thus far, and we are very pleased with our returning veteran players that helped us qualify for Athens last year in Argentina. Those players have come in with a refreshing and renewed enthusiasm. At the same time, it is also wonderful to see the new players bring a different dimension to our camp."

The U.S. Paralympic Team qualified for this summer's Paralympic Games in October 2003, at the Paralympic Soccer World Championship in Argentina. Soccer in the Paralympics is played seven-a-side and on smaller fields by athletes with Cerebral Palsy, traumatic brain injury or stroke survivors.

U.S. Paralympic Soccer Team
ARCO Training Camp – Feb. 24-29, 2004

Player                    Pos.        Hometown
Jay Aprea                 M           Boston, Mass.
Derek Arneaud       M           East Stroudsburg, Pa.
Josh Blue                 F           Denver, Colo.
David Burks            M          Cham, Switzerland
John Clore               D          Washington, D.C.
Bosco Hawkins      D          Anchorage, Ala.
Keith Johnson        GK        Anchorage, Ala.
Tom Latsch              M          Cleveland, Ohio
Culture McArdle       M         San Diego, Calif.
Jon McCullough      D          Washington, D.C.
Josh McKinney        M         Princeton, W.V.
Jason Slemons       M         Eagle Creek, Ala.
Eli Wolff                     F          Boston, Mass.
David Woosnam     D          Roswell, Ga.
 
Head Coach – Jay Hoffman
Asst. Coach - Mike Haas

For more information, contact the U.S. Paralympic Soccer Team at www.usparalympics.org or parsoccer@hotmail.com.

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