On location: Leitch back in action

2610), was hoping for a quick recovery so that he would not lose too much ground in preseason training. What he got was something that verged on miraculous.

"Six days after the surgery I ran 4.5 miles," said Leitch. "Seven days after the surgery I ran 6.5 miles. This is without question a testament to the procedure that Dr. Muschaweck performs. Usually guys who have the surgery done in the U.S. have to sit out 6-8 weeks. I am back full in under three."

Now that everything looks to have gone exactly as planned, the results will have a great impact on both Leitch and the MetroStars in the future.

"I feel that my movement is more dynamic now," remarked Leitch. "It's nice to be back playing full, and now I just need to work to get back to where I was last year. It will be nice, however, to be pain free this year. That's for certain."

"Given the success of the procedure, and Leitch's recovery I think that we will look to use this procedure now on more players if they have similar situations," said Schwerner.

Notes from training

Practice: The morning session on Sunday was very similar to Saturday's morning session. The team did running to open the practice, and then finished with some possession games.

Time to rest: After four and a half days of tough practice, the MetroStars got some good news from the coaching staff on Sunday when they learned that they would have Sunday afternoon off. There are also rumblings that the players might have Monday off as well, but this is not confirmed. During their off time, however long it may be, the players will be able to explore some of Guayaquil and do some shopping.

Rehab: Goalkeeper Jonny Walker continues to rehab his shoulder after having rotator cuff surgery in November. He is working hard on doing fundamental goalkeeping drills, and this week he began jumping drills for the first time since the procedure.

Defender Seth Stammler is also doing very well in his rehab from an ankle injury. He is currently still in New Jersey, and the reports are that he will join the team in Trinidad. The team is hopeful that he will be fully cleared to play at this time.

Ping pong: Another tournament was held on Saturday night, and this time MetroStars assistant coach David Kammarman was victorious, defeating Zach Wells in the final. The official MetroStars.com tournament will be held later in the week.

Ecaudorian Quick Fact of the Day: Ecuador was one of three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Colombia in 1830 (the others being Colombia and Venezuela).


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