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Clemson’s Greg Eckhardt Named to the United States Men’s Pan-American Soccer Team

Clemson’s Greg Eckhardt Named to the United States Men’s Pan-American Soccer Team

July 11, 2007

CHICAGO, IL- Bob Jenkins, head coach of the U.S. Men’s Pan-American Soccer Team, announced his 17-player roster for the upcoming Pan-American Games, which will be held from July 13-26 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

The team will open the tournament on July 15 against Venezuela at 5:15 p.m. ET at the Zico Football Center before taking on Bolivia on July 18 at 2 p.m. ET at the Miecimo da Silva Sport Complex. The U.S. will round out group play against Mexico on July 21 at 9 a.m. ET at Brazil’s famed Maracana Stadium. The tournament semifinals will take place on July 24 and the third place and final matches will be held on July 27, all at Maracana Stadium.

Highlighting the roster are 11 collegiate players, including three from UCLA in Greg Folk, Chance Meyers and Michael Stephens. The Atlantic Coast Conference adds three players in Clemson’s Greg Eckhardt and Maryland’s Omar Gonzales and Jeremy Hall, and the Big Ten Conference adds four in Penn State’s Warren Gross, Indiana’s Kevin Alston and Daniel Kelly and the University of Michigan’s Peri Marosevic. Santa Clara’s Kevin Klasila, Stephen McCarthy and Jalil Anibaba round out the college contingent, with Klasila making his first appearance with a youth national team.

Marosevic is coming off of a strong showing at the Lisbon International Tournament with the U.S. Under-18s in early June where he scored three of the USA’s four goals. The Rockford, Ill., native tallied the only U.S. goal in a 3-1 loss to New Zealand, and two goals in a 3-2 win over Norway.

The three youngest players on the roster, Danny Barrera, Danny Cruz and Shawn Barry, all turned 17 earlier this year and hail from Thousand Oaks, Calif., Glendale, Ariz. and Miramar, Fla., respectively. Four midfielders, Jalil Anibaba of Davis Calif., Norfolk, Va.’s TJ Cyrus, Jeremy Hall from Tampa, Fla., and Dan Kelly from Hendersonville, Tenn., complete the 17-player roster.

Of the 17 players, nine have been a part of the U.S. Under-17 Residency Program in Alston, Barerra, Davies, Eckhardt, Gonzalez, Hall, Kelly, Marosevic and Stephens. Alston, Gonzalez, Hall and Kelly were part of the U.S. Under-17 team that participated at the 2005 FIFA U-17 World Cup. Anibaba, Gonzalez, Hall, Kelly, McCarthy, Myers and Stephens all made appearances for the U.S. Under-20s during the past two-year cycle.

The Pan American games are a continental version of the Olympic Games which includes the Olympic Program sports and others that are not part of the Olympics. Always conducted one year before the Olympic Games, the first Pan American Games were held in 1951, in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Inspired by the holding of the first Central American Games in 1924, the Latin American representatives of the International Olympic Committee proposed the creation of a competition that would include all the countries in the Americas to strengthen sport activities in the region.

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