End of the Pan American Games in Santiago, Chile. Here is the third and final part of the Canadian women's team.
Your tournament has come to an end. What is your assessment from a sports perspective?
We finished 8th out of 8. The competition was extremely tough. The main factor for us was our lack of experience against these teams. We play so few international matches, especially against this style. Every four years when we come to the Games, we always have the same realization... we lack experience! But in the end, we need to look at the journey we had to get there. We qualified for the Games in the first round by beating the United States for the first time in the last ten years. We won the silver medal at the NACHC, just two goals away from qualifying for the World Championship (15-17 against Greenland)! We feel a great sense of pride to be among the top eight nations in the Americas!
We are models of perseverance. We are the only country where athletes have to pay to represent their nation in the Games!
What teams inspired you during this tournament?
Brazil is always very inspiring to watch ;-) ! Seeing professionals play in person is, in itself, an extraordinary experience for athletes!
If you had to summarize the experience of the Pan American Games in a few sentences, what struck you the most?
"We are more than a medal or a result." We are our values, our team spirit; we are leaders, models of perseverance and resilience for the younger generations. We are the only country where athletes have to pay to represent their nation in the Games! We cherished every moment!
Pictures from Federico Pancaldi
What are the next competitions for your team?
For now, we will have a break for a few months. The majority of athletes have been on the go for two years non-stop. It's important to note that all athletes and staff work full-time while maintaining a professional training level. We will resume training in August to prepare the team for the next qualification for the World Championships.
What are your major goals for the coming months and years?
At the moment, athletes are returning to their provinces in the provincial selection. Each province has its own goals. Afterward, we will regroup for a national camp to select the next generation that will undergo the next 3-year cycle.
Before returning to Canada, some members of the team took advantage of the Chilean stage to discover or rediscover Patagonia.
Nathalie Brochu (head coach) and Audrey Vanslette (assistant coach)
A big thank you to Guillaume and Nathalie for your trust and for allowing us to experience your journey through the Canada' diary of the Pan American Games. Also, thank you for sharing your passion and the realities of a sport that is less recognized in your country.