COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – July 26, 2013 – U.S. Women’s Indoor Team head coach Denise Zelenak has announced the squad that will compete in a series of three test matches against Canada. The matches will take place at the Sportsplex in Feasterville, Pa. on Saturday, August 3 at 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. and the final match on Sunday, August 4 at 10:00 a.m.
“With the Pan Am qualifier only nine months away we feel very fortunate to have this early opportunity to compete utilizing the new fives format,” said Zelenak. “The timing of the rule change has definitely increased the importance of this event for the team. We are not only honing our squad for the upcoming Pan American Cup, but now we must adjust quickly, while experimenting with new systems and strategies.”
The pool of selected players is comprised of 19 athletes including four goalkeepers. Zelenak will activate up to 12 athletes for each match. Of the 19 athletes named, 14 have competed for a U.S. Indoor team internationally.
Notable on the list are veterans Ali McEvoy who was named to the U.S. Women’s National Team in May 2013, Rachael Milne, Kim Tunell and Amanda Fleischut. Fleischut was a member of the U.S. Developmental Squad in 2012. All four players were on the team that won the RohrMax Cup in Vienna, Austria in January 2013. Senior squad newcomers Margaux Paolino and Erin Matson who led the March 2013 Argentina series with seven goals each will also compete for the U.S.
The month-long selection process for the test series concluded in a training weekend July 20 in Feasterville that featured a tournament style competition. Teams competed using the new International Hockey Federation’s rules including the much debated reduction in players from six to five.
“The new style of play will really be an equalizer on the international stage,” said Tunell after Sunday’s training weekend. “Not only will teams need great technical skills but also more stamina to cover extra ground. Ultimately, it is going to make the game more exciting because we are all starting fresh.”
At the conclusion of the series with Canada, Zelenak will announce the squad which will travel to Leipzig, Germany in January 2014. That tour may prove to be the final preparation for the next Pan American Indoor Cup in April 2014 in Montevideo, Uruguay which serves as a qualifier for the Indoor World Cup.
The August series with Canada is sponsored in part by the Mystx Field Hockey club.
Admission to all matches is free. A player clinic is planned for Saturday afternoon, August 3 from 11am to 1pm, between matches. Click here to register for the clinic.
The following players have been named to the Can Am series: Megan Bozek (Cortlandt Manor, N.Y.), Susan Ciufo (Bangor, Pa.), Ashley Dalisera (Millersville, Md.), Amy Daniel (Mountain Top, Pa.), Kelly Driscoll (Philadelphia, Pa.), Katherine Ferrara (Spring City, Pa.), Amanda Fleischut (Doylestown, Pa.), Lauren Hibshman (Allentown, Pa.), Maria Keesling (Downingtown, Pa.), Meredith Long (Ocean City, N.J.), Erin Matson (Landenberg, Pa.), Lindsay McArdle (Upper Darby, Pa.), Jessica McCarthy (Havertown, Pa.), Ali McEvoy (Gilbertsville, Pa.), Rachael Bloemker Milne (Hatfield, Pa.), Margaux Paolino (Villanova, Pa.), Maddy Sposito (Ridgefield, Conn.), Kim Tunell (Wilmington, Del.), Mallory Weisen (Lock Haven, Pa.)