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Spirit coach, two players make NPSL All-Star Game

The Spirit will be well-represented at the National Professional Soccer League's eighth All-Star Game on Feb. 19 in Buffalo, N.Y.

In addition to coach Dave MacWilliams, who will direct the American Division squad, defender Tim Wittman has been named a starter and forward Kevin Sloan a reserve. Coaches and players selected the teams.

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Other starters are Hector Marinaro, Zoran Karic and goalie Otto Orf, all of the defending NPSL champion Cleveland Crunch, Richard Chinapoo of the Harrisburg Heat and Paul Dougherty of the Buffalo Blizzard.

In addition to Sloan, the reserves are goalie Carlos Pena, Danny Pena and Dennis Brose, Dayton Dynamo; Denzil Antonio and Marcelo Carrera, Canton Invaders; and Rudy and Randy Pikuzinski, Buffalo Blizzard.

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Starters for National Division coach Zoran Savic of Kansas City: ex-Spirit Goran Hunjak and Brian Haynes, Kansas City Attack; goalie Jamie Swanner and Kevin Hundelt, St. Louis Ambush; Kim Roentved, Wichita Wings; Pato Margetic, Detroit Rockers.

The reserves: goalie Victor Nogueira and Matt Knowles, Milwaukee Wave; Sean Bowers and Joey Kirk, Detroit; Daryl Doran and Steve Maurer, St. Louis; Wes Wade, Kansas City; Ken Snow, Chicago Power.

Big night for Crunch stars

Marinaro delivered an NPSL-record 18 points in Cleveland's 33-8 thrashing of Canton and Karic had a record eight assists, feeding Marinaro six times.

Karic broke the mark of seven assists set earlier this season by Marinaro and Doran. Marinaro's 18 points exceeded the record of 17 he shared with Canton's Carlos Ledesma.

For their combined efforts, Marinaro and Karic were named Co-Players of the Week. Marinaro, the only player in NPSL history to score 100 goals in a season, is 36 shy of doing it for the third time. He leads the NPSL with 169 points and Karic is fourth with 112 despite missing nine games with injuries.

Schedule kinder to Spirit

After three games in three nights last weekend, the Spirit, to MacWilliams' relief, will have only two in the next two weeks, including Friday's contest here against U.S. World Cup goalie Tony Meola and Buffalo.

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"Three-in-three is grueling," MacWilliams said. "But I think we came out of it in good shape, with two wins and no serious injuries."

Miscellaneous

Barry Stitz, who had 11 points over the weekend, including seven in Milwaukee, is two shy of his career record of 63 as a Spirit rookie in 1992-93. . . . The Spirit predicts a crowd of 7,000-plus for Meola and the Blizzard. . . . Spirit defender Omid Namazi missed Saturday's game with a sprained ankle but is probable for Friday. . . . Detroit's Bowers was named NPSL Player of the Month for January with 44 points and 33 blocks, raising his league high to 114.


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