US Beats Haiti 6-3 in Houston Exhibition


Team Haiti, in white, falls to striker Foday Dumbuya and team Lone Star Houston in a developmental exhibition. Photo courtesy Leslie Plaza Johnson and the Houston Chronicle

Houston, Texas - Led by retired Army Sgt. Robert Ferguson, the Lone Star Houston amputee soccer club defeated a Haitian team 6-3 at the Woodlands, at Lents Family Park, Nov. 25.

The event, sponsored by the MLS Houston Dynamo Dash Youth Training Academy, was billed as an exhibition to give developing players the opportunity to gain experience playing in real-game international environment.

This was the second time the US and Haiti met this year. The first time was when the US and Haitian National Select teams met in Irvine, California. Haiti won that match-up.

Earlier in the week members of Lone Star Houston and the Haitian team scrimmaged with members of the professional FC Dallas club.

For more coverage of the event, please go to the Houston Chronicle

USA - Haiti Meet In Irvine

The national teams from the USA and Haiti met in Irvine, California, at the end of July for a three match mini-tournament. This meet was the first opportunity for many players on both sides of the ball to engage in an international competition. It was designed as a developmental opportunity for new players as well as for international tournament points.

Team Haiti, which placed 7th in the most recent Amputee Soccer World Cup, won the tournament 3-0.

The tournament was hosted by the City of Irvine at the Grand Park recreational complex, with the full, generous support of the Orange County Soccer Club of the USL, the United Soccer League. The Orange County Soccer Club is an affiliate partner of the new Los Angeles Football Club of MLS.


The US National Amputee Soccer Team (USNAST)was the guest of the Houston Dynamo recently for it's Major league Soccer match with in-state rival Dallas FC. Our team was in Houston for a weekend training camp and open tryouts.
   Shown here are: Back row left-to-right, team Captain Nico Calabria, of Massachusetts; Alvenso Honore, Massachusetts; Foday Dumbuya, Texas; Dan Broome, California; Rich Ramsay, Oregon; and Head Coach Dr. Eric Lamberg, New York.
    Front Row left-to-right: Robert Ferguson,Texas; Ignacio Medrano, California; Jovan Booker, New York; Rafael Perdigão, Massachusetts; and Robert Rodriguez, New York.


Congressional Recognition
Mr. Daniel Espinoza, at right, accepts a USNAST team T-shirt from head Coach Dr. Eric Lamberg. Mr. Espinoza is the Military Staffer for US Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, Texas 18th District. Mr. Espinoza also presented Coach Lamberg and Local Organizing Chairman Robert Ferguson with Congressional Certificates of Appreciation for their work in supporting individuals with limb issues.
   Below: To get a feel for the game Mr. Espinoza got up on sticks and joined in some of the team drills, shown here kicking against rookie goalkeeper Travis Oliva, of Ft. Worth.
   Photos courtesy of Ellen Wang Photography.




Team USA Wins Bronze in Costa Rica


Back row, from left: Dr. James Pierre-Glaude, Trainer, NY; Dr. Eric Lamberg, Head Coach, NY; Josh Sundquist, CA; Nico Calabria, Offensive Team Captain, MA; Foday Dumbuya, TX; Keith Mann, Defensive Team Captain, NJ; Dan Broome, CA

Front row, from left: Rich Ramsay, OR; Craig Till, TX; Ignacio Medrano, CA; Noah Grove, MD; Alvenso Honore, MA.




Rookie Goalkeeper Alvenso Honore, of Boston, MA, scored the Bronze Medal shut-out in his very first international competition.
 
Nico Calabria, heading the ball, Cambridge, MA, led all US scorers with five in the three match set.


European Championship Shatters
All-Time Attendance Records

Istanbul, Turkey - This game is catching on.

Amputee Soccer has traditionally been played in club and university-sized stadiums. But the Gold Medal match between Turkey in England in the recent European Championships vaporized all previous attendance marks.

The final match drew so much attention that it had to be moved to the Vodafone Park Stadium in Istanbul. Attendance - standing room only at more than 41,188 fans.

Turkey - 2 England - 1 for the Gold. Poland-Bronze. Spain 4th.

Tournament sponsors were reportedly very happy with the turn-out...




Game Pioneer Kari Young Dennis. Photo by Rick Hofmann

Amp Soccer
Pioneer!

Team USA was treated to a special surprise guest during its recent trip to Southern California.

Multiple World Cup veteran Dan Broome introduced the team to amputee soccer pioneer Ms. Kari Young Dennis, a member of the US World Cup team which played in Tashkent, Uzbekistan in 1991.

Amputee soccer has been a co-ed game since its very first day.

Team USA 2017 warmly embraced Ms. Dennis as a fellow teammate.

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USA's Hofmann Re-Elected
World Federation President

Rick Hofmann, President of the American Amputee Soccer Association, has been re-elected President of the World Amputee Football (Soccer) Federation (WAFF). The election was held during the recent WAFF Congress of Members in Guadalajara, Mexico.

Amputee soccer is now played in 55 countries around the world.

Also elected to leadership positions were Dr. Jan Gauna, Mexico, as 1st VP; and Mateusz Widlak, Poland, as 2nd VP. The Federation Secretary General and Chief Referee will be up for election in 2018.


Team USA returned home from the First Costa Rican Cup for Amputees wearing Bronze Medals after defeating Costa Rica's National Team, 6-0 in its final match.

In that match rookie Goalkeeper Avelso Honore, Boston, MA, notched the shutout while Nico Calabria, of Cambridge, MA, scored a hat trick. Noah Grove, of Frederick, MD scored twice and Foday Dumbuya, Houston, TX, once.

Team USA beat the Costa Rican Team Heredia in its first match 3-0. Calabria 2 goals, Grove 1; but lost 0-2 to Mexico's Los Tigres de Monterrey, the eventual Gold Medal winners, in the semi-finals.

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The Bronze was even more meaningful since Team USA was competing against teams who had played together, sometimes on a weekly basis, for years. Team USA, which includes players literally from all corners of the country, had not played or practiced together as a team since the World Cup in 2014.

Live Streamed

Full reports are not in yet, but we do know that matches were seen via broadcast quality Internet live-stream in Mexico, El Salvador, Costa Rica, throughout the United States, in Brazil, Ireland and Poland.

Team USA's Facebook page alone gathered more than 59,000 responses.



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Myth Busted! Amp Soccer Kicks Rank with Professionals


Top Shots, from left: Nico Calabria, USA; Jonathan Mendoza, El Salvador; and Diego Pezoa, Argentina.

Culiacan, Mexico - It was "obvious."

The myth was that because they play on only one leg, shots from amputee soccer players had to be softer and slower than those of "regular" players.

But those close to the game, especially goalkeepers, knew just the opposite was true - that the body mechanics of the amputee player yielded kicks that were as hard or harder than traditionally configured players.

In the recent Culiacan World Cup the myth was put to the test - and was thoroughly debunked. World Wide.

Now it's a documented fact. Amputee soccer players kicks rank with the professionals'.

World Amputee Football Federation President Richard Hofmann instituted a new "Power Shot" competition in Mexico to test the myth.

Twenty-five of the best players from around the world kicked the ball from the penalty spot during a break from World Cup competition.

Each athlete took three shots. Each kick was measured by a certified, calibrated radar gun provided by the Culiacan Municipal Police. The results were averaged.

The results were shocking to some, expected by others. The amateur, teen and 20-something amputee soccer players kicked the ball 58-59 miles per hour.

According to several Internet sources the average professional kicks the ball at 60 mph.

Myth busted.

But the real heroes of the story are the goalkeepers. They have to stop those professional grade shots with only one arm.

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