It hasn’t been much of an off-season for Warren Ward of the Gee-Gees men’s basketball team. Since finishing the varsity season in March, Warren has been busy training in preparation for the 26th Summer Universiade from August 12-23, 2011, in Schenzhen, China.
The 2010-11 OUA East First team All-Star is one of twelve CIS student-athletes that were chosen to represent Canada, and Warren couldn’t be more excited for the opportunity. “First I get to represent the school and my teammates while I’m over there, and I get to see the world! Not many students get the chance to do that kind of stuff while in school, and so I’m very thankful for that,” said Ward.
“I feel truly honored that I can go and wear Canada on my back, play with some really good players to try and win a gold medal, and explore the world. That’s just a really big honor for me,” he added.
Yet it’s been somewhat of a roller coaster season for the 22-year old with having to adjust his game to new teammates, and a new coach, all the while recovering from hand surgery and nursing a sore hamstring. Nevertheless, donning the maple leaf has always been a dream of Warren’s since his arrival at uOttawa three years ago, and so going through all that adversity just makes it that much sweeter he explained.
Gee-Gees head coach James Derouin was equally thrilled to see Warren’s hard work pay off. “This has been a goal of his since he chose to come to uOttawa,” explained Derouin, “and for him to do it at the end of his third season is testament to how hard he works and how much he wanted to represent his country.”
“It’s well deserved, it’s great for him, it’s great for basketball here at uOttawa, and it’s something that we want to continue in the future to help our athletes take it to the next level,” added Derouin.
Warren becomes just the third men’s basketball athlete, since Josh Gibson-Bascombe and Dax Dessereault, to be selected for the FISU Summer Universiade. He will report to training camp in Vancouverj, B.C. from August 2-6, 2011, before travelling with the team to Shenzhen to continue practicing and play some exhibition matches from August 7-12, 2011.