TRU WolfPack soccer alumnus qualifies for Olympics

By Earl Seitz
January 16, 2018 - 4:10pm Updated: January 18, 2018 - 6:02pm

KAMLOOPS — A former TRU WolfPack men's soccer player has qualified for the Olympics --- with Italy.

Joe Cecchini posted on Facebook that he received word from the Italian Federation that he has been selected to compete in skeleton next month in South Korea.

Cecchini, who is from Trail and attended Thompson Rivers University, then known as the University College of the Cariboo, from 2000 to 2004, playing for the soccer team.

He scored eighteen goals in his four years which placed him eighteenth all time in Pac West scoring.

After his eligibility on the soccer field expired, Cecchini knew he wasn't finished as an athlete.

"I was in Vancouver working and I saw skeleton on TV at the 2006 Olympics and I thought it was the neatest thing I'd ever seen," said Cecchini.  "I thought I could actually fit my types of strengths and athletics, my speed and power."

He has competed in skeleton for the last seven years.

Cecchini says on his Facebook page that after starting this season with his first international win, he struggled to find results on the World Cup.

After Christmas he decided to race the Intercontinental Cup and North America Cup --- and finished the season with a gold medal, but wondered if it was enough.

Cecchini got the word on a phone call from the Italian Federation, gelling him he will be going to Olympic Games in Pyeongchang.

"I'm proud just to be able to go and represent not only Italy but my community that I've lived in," said Cecchini.  "You know being italian, we have large italian communities in Kamloops and I'm originally from Trail, it's a large italian community. So it's really nice to represent all those people I've been able to share a home with."

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