Landon Currie of Vernon is the latest member of the Thompson Rivers University (TRU) WolfPack men’s volleyball team to earn a spot on Team Canada.
The Fulton Maroons’ grad beat out six other liberos to earn a spot on the 2018 junior national squad following a weekend tryout camp in Gatineau, Que.
Currie is preparing to enter his second year as the starting libero with the WolfPack program and is the first TRU player to make the junior national team since teammate Charlie Bringloe (outside hitter, Waterloo, Ont.) achieved that honour in 2015.
“You never know going into these tryouts,’ said WolfPack head coach Pat Hennelly about Currie’s selection. “Landon was solid for us all year. He certainly had experience after starting every match for us all year. He certainly had a lot of confidence. When he trained here before he left, I thought he had a good chance but you never know when the top players get together. I am excited he made it and excited about the opportunities that will present themselves to him.”
Said the acrobatic 5-foot-9 Currie: “Overall, the camp was a great experience and is something I will remember for the rest of my life. Being able to play with some of the best players in the country for my age group was awesome. The camp also included an incredible lineup of coaches with great expertise.”
Hennelly said for the first time in recent years, Volleyball Canada took players from different age classes which saw Currie and university players vying for spots with high-school aged athletes.
Currie says he entered the camp with the same attitude he had when he began his USPORTS career last September with TRU.
“I was positive and supporting my teammates as well as being confident in myself. I think what set me aside from the other liberos was that I had court presence along with being very loud and energetic.”
Currie is one of 10 players on the junior national team from Canada West. The squad will trail in Gatineau, until July 13. The players return home for a month and then prepare for the U21 Norceca championships. That tournament was initially slated to be played in Nicaragua, but due to strife in that country, the championship has been moved to Havana, Cuba. It will be played Aug. 25-Sept. 2.
“When he goes to the tournament he is going to be facing the Americans, the Cubans, some of the best players in the world,” said Hennelly. “That is always an eye-opener for some guys. Knowing Landon, he will take it all in stride and make the most of it.”
Added Currie: “Being able to represent Canada this summer means the world to me. I’ve dreamt of playing for Canada my whole life and now that dream is finally coming true. It is going to be an honour to put on the Canadian jersey and I am sure I’ll be getting goosebumps when I put it on.”
Other WolfPack alums who have played for Canada’s junior national team include Gord Perrin (Creston, B.C.), Brad Gunter (Courtenay) and Colin Carson (Prince George). Perrin and Gunter are currently playing professionally and are both members of Canada’s senior men’s national team.