Soccer teams "acclimatizing" for U Sports Nationals

By Earl Seitz
November 7, 2017 - 5:16pm Updated: November 7, 2017 - 5:56pm

KAMLOOPS — From as far away as four time zones most of the teams have now arrived for the U Sports Canadian University Soccer Championships.

The time change isn't all that the teams have to get acclimatized to --- the weather has become a big issue.

"We did see the temperature drop --- time change as well", says Carleton Ravens coach Kwesi Loney.

Following an unseasonable blast of winter, city crews have been putting in the extra effort to clear the field of snow at Hillside to make for the most optimal playing conditions, under the circumstances.

Some of the busiest people on the teams in these conditions could be the athletic therapists, whose job it is to keep the athletes in tip top playing condition, rehabilitation from injury --- and heaven forbid, if it were to happen, frost bite.

James Gardiner is the Athletic Therapist for the York University Lions, "We haw the minuses --- that was shocking to us at first ---- but our guys are adjusted."

"It's important that they have a really good warmup (before the games)" says Carleton Athletic Therapist Nadine Smith.

While the players put on a brave face, and a few bare legs in frigid conditions, it's a big culture shot for some ---- who come from far away lands, where the closest thing to a snow drift is a sand dune.

Carleton midfielder Sultan Alaitah is from Saudi Arabia, "It was shocking ---- especially when we saw the snow", says Alaitah.

The weather is forecast to moderate, with temperatures above zero for the first games on Thursday, and up to six degrees by Friday.

The therapists say their athletes will be ready and prepared, no matter the conditions.


WolfPack howling to get started at U Sports nationals