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Soccer Spotlight:
Two KiXX Members Selected to Compete with U.S. Futsal National Team
D'Ambra and Shanker Join the National Team for a Two-Game CONCACAF Tournament May 18 and 20

Thursday, May 6, 2004

By David Deal
Philadelphia KiXX Director of Communitions

United States Futsal National Team and Milwaukee Wave head coach Keith Tozer announced today that two members of the current team roster have been selected to represent the United States on the country’s National Futsal Team. Player/coach Don D’Ambra and forward Joel Shanker will join the U.S. National Team for a two-game CONCACAF Tournament Qualifier, to be held at the U.S. Cellular Arena in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 18 and May 20, 2004.

The U.S. Team will compete in a two-game qualifying tournament with the winner of the total goal series advancing to the eight-team CONCACAF Final Qualifying Tournament, which will be played in Costa Rica during the last two weeks of July. The final qualifying tournament will determine the region’s two participants in the FIFA Futsal World Championship in Chinese Taipei from November 22 to December 12.

Futsal, the international version of indoor soccer, is played on a field slightly larger than a basketball court without boards surrounding the field. The game is fast-paced and requires tremendous skill and cohesive teamwork to generate scoring opportunities. The U.S. Team, coached by Tozer since 1998, has become one of CONCACAF region’s top teams and features many players from the Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL).

D’Ambra and Shanker join 14 of their Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL) counterparts, 14 of the total 17 roster players. The Milwaukee Wave is sending five players, four players will represent the two-time defending champion Baltimore Blast, two from the Kansas City Comets and one hails from the St. Louis Steamers.

Both D’Ambra and Shanker made their national Futsal debuts with the Tozer-led squad in the three-day Futsal Goal Gup in Anaheim, California on December 5-7, 2003. The U.S. Team posted a 2-1 record for the weekend with victories over Canada and Mexico and the lone loss occurring versus Guatemala. The mark earned the national unit the inaugural Futsal Goal Cup, as D’Ambra led the tournament in scoring with four goals in three contests, including a hat-trick versus Mexico, while Shanker added a pair of goals.

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