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ATLANTA 1996 OLYMPICS | VALLEY / VENTURA

OLYMPIC Notebook

July 31, 1996

Although it has managed just three goals in five losses, the U.S. men's field hockey team still has a chance to make history today if it defeats South Africa in the ninth-place semifinals.

A win would be the first ever for U.S. men's field hockey, which is 0-24-4 in its Olympic history. It won't be easy, however. The 1996 team, which includes five area players, Larry Amar (Camarillo), Nick Butcher (Simi Valley), Ben Maruquin (Ventura), Tom Vano (Simi Valley) and Scott Williams (Newbury Park), has been outscored, 23-3, overall and faces a South African team that is 0-2-3.

If the U.S. team loses, it will have one last chance on Thursday in the 11th-place game against the loser of Argentina vs. Malaysia.

SOME OF THE AREA ATHLETES COMPETING TODAY:

Ruben Benitez,

Woodland Hills, track and field

*

Gail Devers,

Van Nuys, track and field

*

Denny Fercho,

Ventura, handball vs. Kuwait

*

Nada Kawar,

La Canada, discus

*

Jeff Williams,

San Fernando, track and field

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