Jan 22, 2015

OTTAWA (CIS) – The first leg of the 2015 Winter Universiade gets underway this weekend in Strbske Pleso and Osrblie, Slovakia, where a squad of six student-athletes will represent Canada in the sport of biathlon.

The Nordic events of the Universiade will take place in Slovakia from Jan. 24 to Feb. 1, prior to the start of the main Games, which run from Feb. 3 to 14 in Granada, Spain. Canada will only compete in biathlon during the initial segment.

In that sport, Canada’s team includes three students who competed at the 2013 Games in Trentino, Italy. The returning members are Evan Girard (Oxbow, Sask.) from the University of Saskatchewan, Keely MacCulloch (Calgary) from the University of Alberta Augustana Campus, as well as Jessica Paterson (St. Albert, Alta.) from the University of Alberta.

Paterson had the best individual result for Canada in Trentino, finishing the women’s 15-kilometre race in 31st position. Along with MacCulloch, she was also part of the ninth-place mixed relay.

The returning trio is joined by Sasha Eccleston (Hinton, Alta.) from the U of A’s Augustana Campus, Regan Mills (Truro, N.S.) from the University of Prince Edward Island and Sam West (Grand Prairie, Alta.) from the University of Northern British Columbia.

Eccleston, Mills and West are veterans of the Canadian championship circuits. MacCulloch competed in the 2012 junior world championships in Kontiolahti, Finland, while Paterson has numerous top 10 placements on the Canadian championship circuit as well.

Team leader Lowell Niven from the University of Alberta Augustana Campus also has previous Winter Universiade experience, as he served as the technician in Trentino. Joel Gervais will be the Team Canada technician in Slovakia.

The contingent will compete for Canada’s first medal in biathlon at the Universiade.

Team Canada website: http://english.cis-sic.ca/universiade/winter/2015/index
Strbske Pleso/Osrblie website: http://www.tatry2015.sk/
Granada 2015 website: http://www.granada2015.org/en/


Name – School – Hometown

Keely MacCulloch – University of Alberta Augustana Campus – Calgary, Alta.
Jessica Paterson – University of Alberta – St. Albert, Alta.

Sasha Eccleston – University of Alberta Augustana Campus – Hinton, Alta.
Evan Girard – University of Saskatchewan – Oxbow, Sask.
Reagan Mills – University of Prince Edward Island – Truro, N.S.
Sam West – University of Northern British Columbia – Grand Prairie, Alta.

Team Leader: Lowell Niven (Camrose, Alta. / University of Alberta Augustana Campus)
Technician: Joel Gervais (St. Albert, Alta.)

Women’s events: 15 km Individual – 7.5 km Sprint – 10 km Pursuit – 12.5 km Mass Start – Mixed Relay
Men’s events: 20 km Individual – 10 km Sprint – 12.5 km Pursuit – 15 km Mass Start – Mixed Relay


Jan. 25: Men’s 20 km individual & Women’s 15 km individual
Jan. 27: Men’s 10 km sprint & Women’s 7.5 km sprint
Jan. 28: Men’s pursuit & Women’s pursuit
Jan. 30: Mixed relay (Men 2 x 7.5 km & Women 2 x 6 km)
Jan. 31: Men 15 km mass start & Women 12.5 km mass start

About the Winter Universiade

The Winter Universiade is a biennial international multi-sport event open to competitors who are at least 17 and less than 28 years of age as of January 1 in the year of the Games. Participants must be full-time students at a post-secondary institution (university, college, CEGEP) or have graduated from a post-secondary institution in the year preceding the event.
The Granada Universiade will feature nine compulsory sports and one optional sport. Compulsory sports: alpine skiing, biathlon, ice hockey, curling, nordic skiing, short track speed skating, figure skating, synchronized skating, snowboarding. Optional sport: freestyle skiing.
NOTE: Biathlon and nordic skiing will take place in Strbske Pleso and Osrblie, Slovakia from Jan. 24 to Feb. 1, prior to the start of the Games in Granada.
Official website: www.granada2015.org

About Canadian Interuniversity Sport

Canadian Interuniversity Sport is the national governing body of university sport in Canada. Every year, over 11,500 student-athletes and 700 coaches from 56 universities and four regional associations vie for 21 national championships in 12 different sports. CIS also provides high performance international opportunities for Canadian student-athletes at Winter and Summer Universiades, as well as numerous world university championships. For further information, visit www.cis-sic.ca or follow us on:

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/CIS_SIC
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/cissports
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/universitysport
Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/CIS_SIC