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3 players on Pan Am hockey Elite squad
The T&T trio of England-based duo Kwandwane Browne and Tariq Marcano, as well as Australia-based Akim Toussaint were named to the Pan American Hockey Federation 2017 Men’s Pan American Elite Teams.
Since 2007, Pan American Elite Teams have been named every two years to recognize the top players in Pan American competitions and for the first time this year, separate Indoor Elite teams will be named and will be announced in a few days as well.
By being named to the Elite Team, the 39-year-old Browne who has appeared for T&T in a record 315 international matches earned his fifth selection to the PAHF Elite Team a record he shared with team leader Canadian defender Scott Tupper and Argentinian Lucas Vila.
Browne was on the first PAHF Elite Team back in 2009 and only missed making the 2015 Elite squad due to injury while also being selected to the team in 2007 with fellow T&T international Wayne Legerton and Dwain Quan Chan; 2009 and 2011 as the lone T&T player, and 2013 with countrymen Mickell Pierre and Akim Toussaint.
Toussaint, 28, meanwhile was selected to his third Elite Team after being selected in 2015 as well while 21-year-old student-athlete Marcano, voted the “Top Youth Player” at this year’s event in Lancaster earned his first Elite Team selection along with Argentinian Olympic gold medallists Pedro Ibarra and Agustin Mazzilli.
Overall, Pan American Cup finalists Argentina and Canada have the strongest representation with five and four players respectively, including Canadian David Carter with the nod for the goal-keeping position for the third time, following selections in 2009 and 2015.
The achievements of the USA and T&T, semi-finalists in Lancaster, were rewarded with the nomination of two and three players respectively.
Altogether, the 2017 men’s Pan American Elite Team is made up of players from six different countries: Argentina (five), Canada (four), T&T (three), USA (two) and one each from Brazil and Chile, with an average age of 28.4 years old.
Former T&T women’s team standouts, Nicole Aming (formerly Dixon) and Stacey Siu Butt remained the two players from the English-speaking Caribbean to have ever made the women’s Elite Team, back in 2009 when T&t ended fourth after a 2-1 loss to Chile in the bronze medal match.
Leading the 2017 women’s Pan American Elite Team is young Chilean sensation Denise Krimerman, who was instrumental in leading her team to a Pan American Cup silver medal .
She is closely followed in the voting by Americans Kathleen Sharkey and Melissa Gonzalez and Argentina stalwarts Florencia Habif and Delfina Merino.
Chilean Camilla Caram is the only player appearing for the fourth time on the Elite roster, with impressive Canadian striker Brienne Stairs making her third Elite appearance and Chilean Claudia Schuler voted for the third time as goal-keeper (following 2009 and 2013).
Pan American Cup finalists Argentina and Chile dominated the voting, with four players selected each, while semi-finalists USA and Canada are recognized with the selection of three players each while Uruguay and Mexico has one apiece.
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