She’s already played in every province in the country and as far south in the U.S. as Alabama, now arts student Laura Breen is heading to the other side of the globe to lace up her shoes for an elite soccer event.
The 21-year-old St. John’s-native, who is completing a degree in political science and French, is the only person from this province and one of only two players from Atlantic Canada chosen to represent Canada at the 2007 World University Games in Bangkok, Thailand next month. She heads overseas July 29 and returns Aug. 20.
“This is by far the biggest opportunity that I’ve ever had,” the soccer standout said just before departing. “I played with the under 16 national team when I was 14- and 15-years old but nothing compares to this.”
A well-known soccer player in the sports community, Ms. Breen was named to Team Canada after being invited to take part in tryouts in Montreal in April. There she was up against the best players from across the country. She quickly proved she’s in top form and worthy of making the cut.
Despite only being in her third year of studies, Ms. Breen has already racked up top awards from groups such as Atlantic University Sport as well as the Canadian Interuniversity Sport. The midfielder said heading to Thailand will allow her to spread her athletic wings and go face-to-face with top players across the globe.
Canada’s 19-member squad is looking to top its fifth-place finish at the 2005 games in Turkey.
The women’s soccer competition starts Aug. 7 with Canada’s opening round game against South Africa.
“I will experience playing with the best in the country and playing against the best in the world,” said Ms. Breen, who is also spending part of her summer working two jobs and coaching a provincial team as well as a squad in Mount Pearl. “I will experience intense competition and the feeling of representing my country.
“I also get the chance to travel half way across the world and experience a completely different culture,” she added. “Soccer has brought me to many places. The number of people I have met is unbelievable. Some of my best friends are the ones I have met through soccer. I get my life out of soccer.”