Josh Sweeney, who bagged the solitary goal to clinch an historic second consecutive Paralympic gold medal for the Unites States in the Sochi 2014 final against Russia, has been named the new captain of the American ice sledge hockey team.
Sweeney is entering his fourth season on the US squad and replaces former captain Andy Yohe, who announced his retirement earlier this year.
Yohe will prove a hard act to follow after leading the US to becoming the first side to win back-to-back Paralympic titles in the sport, with wins at Vancouver 2010 and in Sochi back in March.
Forward Sweeney has plenty of experience though, as he was part of the US sides that claimed World Championship gold in 2012 and finished as runners-up to Canada last year in Goyang, South Korea.
His overall career statistics read nine goals and 14 assists in 23 games.
The experienced Nikko Landeros and Josh Pauls have been named as alternate captains.
Both men are double-Paralympic gold medallists, with Landeros entering his sixth campaign and Pauls his seventh on the US squad.
In 77 career games, Landeros has accumulated 20 goals while Pauls has registered 21 goals in 87 games.
"Josh has provided great leadership to our team, both on and off the ice," said Dan Brennan, general manager of the US ice sledge hockey team.
"His dedication and hard work sets a tremendous standard for our other players.
"Nikko and Josh are terrific players and leaders in their own right.
"They compete with great passion and have a wealth of international experience."
The trio are among 11 members of the triumphant Sochi 2014 squad returning to action for the upcoming season, including Steve Cash, Tyler Carron, Declan Farmer, Dan McCoy, Kevin McKee, Adam Page, Paul Schaus and Brody Roybal.
Sweeney and the rest of the squad are set to attend a training camp tomorrow at the Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Arlington, Virginia as preparations get underway for the start of the newly launched World Series which is due to start later this year.
The series will see nations from both the A and B pools competing against each other for end-of-season ranking points, with the calendar of fixtures due to be announced soon by the International Paralympic Committee.
Meanwhile, the US will also be eyeing home success at the World Championships A-Pool scheduled for Buffalo, New York, from April 24 to May 2 next year.
It will mark the third time the Championships have been held in the US, following the 2000 edition in Utah and 2008 in Marlborough, Massachusetts.
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