LA PRAIRIE (June 3, 2019) – Handball Canada and the Canadian Olympic Committee have announced Canada’s handball team nominated to compete at the Lima 2019 Pan American Games.
The 14 handballers qualified for Team Canada based on their performances at the Last Chance tournament that took place from March 20 to 29, 2019 at the Mexico Olympic Center.
“Twenty years ago, I was at the Pan American Games in Winnipeg as an athlete. We won silver but unfortunately missed our qualification for the Sydney Olympic Games by four goals,” said national team coach Nathalie Brochu. “Looking back, despite this disappointment the Pan American Games were one of the most beautiful moments of my career. My goal is for our players to leave Lima with that same feeling.”
Handball is one of 13 direct qualifying sports for Team Canada at the 2019 Pan Am Games leading up to the 2020 Tokyo Games. The gold medal team will secure their spot in Tokyo.
“It is an honor for me to be able to represent Canada at the Pan American Games for a second time,” said team captain Vassilia Gagnon. “My teammates and I have been investing time and money for almost 10 years. Many people told us that we were crazy to believe in it and continue the national program, but we are ready and excited! We want to show that when we are passionate, we can achieve great feats.”
“I’m so excited to be representing Canada,” said teammate Katya Chan. “In 2015, I flew to Toronto to watch my friends compete and was able to witness first hand what an incredible experience they had. Since then, I trained to be the best I could be so I could experience it for myself. To have the opportunity to play against professional players still feels unbelievable.”
Handball will take place July 24 to 30 at the Polideportivo 1 venue.
Lima 2019, which will run from July 26 to August 11, will bring together approximately 6,700 athletes from 41 nations of the Americas and feature 62 disciplines in 39 sports. It will be the largest sporting event ever held in Peru.
The athletes and coaches nominated are:
Vassilia Gagnon (Rosemère, Que.)
Camilia Pivin (Drummondville, Que.)
Alexandra Pivin (Drummondville, Que.)
Audrey Marcoux (Sherbrooke, Que.)
Myriam Laplante (St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que.)
Nassima Benhacine (Chambly, Que.)
Myriam Zimmer (Lasalle, Que.)
Émily Routhier (Marbleton, Que.)
Catherine Léger (Greenfield Park, Que.)
Samantha Koosau (Brossard, Que.)
Rosali Langlois (Pétionville, Que.)
Yuki Landry (Regina, Sask.)
Katya Chan (Edmonton, Alta.)
Haven Wong (Edmonton, Alta.)
Nathalie Brochu (La Prairie, Que.) – National Team Head Coach
Prior to being named to Team Canada, all nominations are subject to approval by the COC’s Team Selection Committee following its receipt of nominations by all National Sport Federations in late June 2019.
Story and Photo: Canadian Olympic Committee