Three Trinity Western Spartans are packing their bags this July to play overseas for Team Canada in the 2019 FISU Universiade. This year’s games for university athletes are held in Naples, Italy, which will house 60 countires and over 300 Canadians.
Local students Kristen Sakaki and Elizabeth Hicks were selected to play for Team Canada’s women’s soccer team, now offically made up of the country’s top players aged 17 to 25.
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Though the games are a prestigous oppourtunity, Sakaki says the chance to travel abroad is what really stands out for her.
“When I first heard about it, there were these games going on which I didn’t know much about. But then I heard it was Italy and got so excited. I love Europe.”
Hilary Howe will also join Team Canada by playing on the Women’s Volleyball team.
Howe says her highlight is “being able to play at a high level and represent Canada is such an oppurtunity.”
The games get underway July 3 to 14, but Sakaki and Hicks will fly to Portugal in late June to get a chance to practise with the the full team beforehand. As the games near, all three athletes are stepping up the intensity and practising daily.
Sakaki added that her post-secondary experience in Langley has helped her get to where she is today. “I’m just super excited and thankful for Trinity Western for developing me and giving me this oppurtunity.”
Howe also felt pride for her Trinity team, saying, “If anything, I’d like to thank my team. They’re my best friends and all amazing girls.”
People can watch the live broadcast and the entire Universiade competition on the FISU website.
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