Wheelchair Basketball Canada Nominates Men’s And Women’s Teams For Rio 2016 Paralympic Games

Monday, May 30, 2016
Wheelchair Basketball Canada Nominates Men’s And Women’s Teams For Rio 2016 Paralympic Games

 With 100 days to go until the start of the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, Wheelchair Basketball Canada and the Canadian Paralympic Committee are proud to announce the 24 athletes – 12 men and 12 women – nominated for selection to Team Canada for the Rio Paralympic Games this September.

The Canadian women are the reigning world champions and head into Rio with a roster that features 10 returning players from the club that captured the world title in 2014. Canada most recently placed second on home soil at the Parapan Am Games in 2015.

“We have an excellent group of athletes, coaches and support staff who have all worked very hard to get to this point and that momentum will carry us through the last 100 days until the Games,” said Bill Johnson, head coach of the Canadian women’s team. “As a top-ranked team we are confident in our ability to go head-to-head with the very best in the world as we strive for a return to the Paralympic podium in Rio.”

The Canadian men are the reigning Paralympic champions and six athletes will be returning from the team that won gold four years ago at London 2012. Team Canada placed second at the Toronto 2015 Parapan American Games last summer.

“We have assembled a great team with a balanced mix of veteran leadership and emerging talent,” said Steve Bialowas, head coach of the Canadian men’s team. “Our team is training tirelessly to reach its full potential on the court and we are excited to get underway in what is sure to be an exhilarating competition in Rio.”

The Rio 2016 Paralympic Games take place September 7 to 18. The wheelchair basketball competition features 12 nations on the men’s side and 10 nations in the women’s division. The hard-hitting action will start for Canada on September 8, when the women open the competition against Great Britain and the men face Spain.

“With 100 days to go to the Games, it is very exciting to be celebrating our first teams to be nominated today,” said Team Canada’s Chef de Mission, Chantal Petitclerc. “I admire the commitment to excellence of our wheelchair basketball teams and I know they will be up for the challenge as they compete against a strong field of nations in Rio. I have great confidence in their ability to deliver outstanding performances.”

“Canada’s Men’s and Women’s Wheelchair Basketball teams are poised to make another push for the podium in Rio in September – with the entire country watching and cheering their every basket,” said Canada’s Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, Carla Qualtrough. “On behalf of Team Canada – 35 million strong – congratulations to all the athletes named today to represent our country and I commend Wheelchair Basketball Canada on their outstanding work to preparing our athletes to shine bright in front of the world.”

The athletes nominated to the Canadian Paralympic Team are as follows:

Team Canada Men

Abdi Dini (Scarborough, Ont.) *
David Eng (Montreal, Que.) *
Nik Goncin (Regina, Sask.)
Deion Green (Victoria, B.C.)
Bo Hedges (Wonowon, B.C.) *
Liam Hickey (St. John’s, N.L.)
Chad Jassman (Calgary, Alta.) *
Adam Lancia (Scarborough, Ont.) *
Tyler Miller (Kitchener, Ont.) *

Jonathan Vermette (Sherbrooke, Que.)
Peter Won (Blackfalds, Alta.)
Ben Moronchuk (Edmonton, Alta.) (pending classification)

The nominated team will be supported by the following coaching staff in preparation for Rio:

Head Coach – Steve Bialowas (Toronto, Ont.)
Assistant Coach – Darrell Nordell (Edmonton, Alta.)

Team Canada Women

Tracey Ferguson (Richmond Hill, Ont.)*
Erica Gavel (Prince Albert, Sask.)
Katie Harnock (Elmira, Ont.) *
Melanie Hawtin (Oakville, Ont.)

Jamey Jewells (Donkin, N.S.) *
Rosalie Lalonde (St-Clet, Que.)
Janet McLachlan (Vancouver, B.C.) *
Cindy Ouellet (Quebec, Que.) *
Darda Sales (London, Ont.)
Tamara Steeves (Mississauga, Ont.) *

Amanda Yan (Burnaby, B.C.)
Arinn Young (Legal, Alta.)

* denotes athletes with Paralympic Games experience

The nominated team will be supported by the following coaching staff in preparation for Rio:

Head Coach – Bill Johnson (Winnipeg, Man.)
Assistant Coach – Michael Broughton (Toronto, Ont.)
Assistant Coach – Katie Miyazaki (Richmond, B.C.)

Team Canada has a rich history of excellence at the Paralympic Games. The Canadian men have won three gold medals and one silver in their last four appearances at the Paralympic Games. On the women’s side, Canada won three consecutive Paralympic gold medals in 1992, 1996 and 2000, followed by a bronze medal in 2004.

Story from the Canadian Paralympic Comittee Website | Paralympic.ca

Photo: CSIO

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