PRESS RELEASE 05.08.2004


USA Volleyball Announces Menís Sitting Volleyball Paralympic Team

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. August 5, 2004 - USA Volleyball and the United States Paralympic Committee are pleased to announce the members of the USA Menís Sitting Volleyball Paralympic Team that will be competing in Athens, Greece, in September.

Team members include: Rene Aquino (Chicago, Ill.); Eric Duda (Gainesville, Fla.); Joey Evans (Springville, Utah); Essam Hamido (Nashville, Tenn.); Tracey Lange (Waunakee, Wis.); Curtis Lease (Naperville, Ill.); Jeff MacMunn (Sugar Hill, Ga.); Paul Moran (Glenview, Ill.); Robert Osbahr (Old Bridge, N.J.); Chris Seilkop (Deland, Fla.); Bill Steen (Westminster, Colo.); Brent Rasmussen (Omaha, Neb.).

Team USA will be guided by head coach Bill Hamiter (Bethany, Okla.) and assistant coach Dixie Collins (Burke, Va.). The team leader is Roger Neppl (Denver, Colo.), the vice-president of USA Volleyballís Disabled Sports Division.

The United States, which will be making its sixth Paralympic appearance, will take a veteran squad to Greece. Moran is a member of his fourth Paralympic sitting volleyball team, while Lange has now been selected to three Paralympic sitting volleyball teams. Hamido and Lease both competed in sitting volleyball four years ago in Sydney, Australia.

Three other players represented the USA in standing volleyball in past Paralympics: MacMunn (1996 and 2000), Seilkop (1996 and 2000) and Osbahr (1996).

The men qualified for Septemberís Paralympics in Athens, Greece, by capturing the gold medal at the Para Pan American Games over Brazil in Argentina last December.

Team USA, which has been traveling and training for most of the summer (including trips to Bosnia, the Netherlands, Georgia, Oklahoma and Texas), continues its Paralympic preparations with a pair of four-day training sessions this month at the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. (Aug. 5-8 and Aug. 19-22).

About Sitting Volleyball

Sitting volleyball is played with athletes sitting on the floor. All team members have some type of disability to their lower body such as paralysis from polio, or single- or double-amputation. The net is about three feet high and the court is 10 meters by 6 meters with a 2-meter attack line. The only major differences between the standing game and sitting game besides the smaller court and lower net are: 1) players can block the serve; and 2) one "cheek" must be in contact with the floor when a person makes contact with the ball.

About U.S. Paralympics

U.S. Paralympics is a division of the U.S. Olympic Committee and is dedicated to becoming the world leader in the Paralympic sports movement and promoting excellence in the lives of persons with physical disabilities. For more information on U.S. Paralympics, visit www.usparalympics.org.

2004 USA Menís Paralympic Sitting Volleyball Team Quick Facts

Years (Finish) 1984 (7th), 1988 (10th), 1992 (11th), 1996 (11th), 2000 (12th) and 2004

Medals None

Multiple Paralympians 4-Paul Moran (1992, 1996, 2000 and 2004) 3-Tracey Lange (1996, 2000 and 2004) 3-Jeff MacMunn (1996, 2000 and 2004) 3-Chris Seilkop (1996, 2000 and 2004) 2-Essam Hamido (2000 and 2004) 2-Curtis Lease (2000 and 2004) 2-Robert Osbahr (1996 and 2004)

First-Time Paralympians Rene Aquino Eric Duda Joey Evans Brent Rasmussen Bill Steen

Paralympians by State Illinois (3): Rene Aquino; Curtis Lease; Paul Moran Florida (2): Eric Duda; Chris Seilkop Colorado (1): Bill Steen Georgia (1): Jeff MacMunn Nebraska (1): Brent Rasmussen New Jersey (1): Robert Osbahr Tennessee (1): Essam Hamido Utah (1): Joey Evans Wisconsin (1): Tracey Lange

Paralympians by College Boston College (1): Paul Moran Central Florida (1): Chris Seilkop Florida (1): Eric Duda Illinois (1): Curtis Lease Nebraska-Omaha (1): Brent Rasmussen San Diego State (1): Bill Steen Tennessee State (1): Essam Hamido Upper Iowa University (1): Tracey Lange Utah Valley State (1): Joey Evans Waubonsee Community College (1): Jeff MacMunn