It’s a long way from Courtenay to Quebec. And ever farther to Korea.
But you won’t hear Joel Regehr complaining about his travel itinerary. Regehr is one of three UBC Thunderbirds men’s volleyball players competing for Canada at the U-21 Pan American Cup, which runs June 23-28 in Gatineau, Que.
The Canadian team will also be competing at the World Universiade Games in Gwangju, Korea from July 3-14 and wrapping up their busy summer at the FIVB World Championships Sept. 11-20 in Mexico.
Regehr, a 6′,7″, 207-pound middle, was Mark R. Isfeld Senior Athlete of the Year in 2013 and played five years with the Comox Valley Strikers Volleyball Club. He will be going into his second year of eligibility this fall at UBC where he is a Kinesiology student.
On June 25, Volleyball BC announced Regehr was one of two recipients of a Ray Lepp Scholarship, the other being Vanessa Cornwall of Trinity Western University.
Raimond (Ray) Lepp was a founding member of Volleyball BC in 1965, and continued as a board member until 1978. With Lepp’s passing, he donated funds through his will to create an endowment fund that awards $2,000 scholarships annually to one male and one female post-secondary British Columbian athlete. Recipients are selected based on their demonstrated leadership, commitment to academic excellence, and potential to join the Canadian National team.
The Canadian team opened the Pan-Am event June 23 with a 3-0 victory over Mexico at the Centre Sportif de Gatineau. They play Chile on June 25 to complete Pool A play. The tournament features top up-and-coming volleyball athletes from the NORCECA and South American zones.
“We have had a good base of training for three weeks, after a selection camp, so the base is starting to be there,” said Canada’s head coach, John Barrett. “The competition is going to be excellent, and it leads us into a very busy summer, which culminates at the World Junior Championships in Mexico in September. We’re excited to be competing here in Canada, with the best young men we have – it’s a great opportunity for all of us.”
The other UBC players with the Canadian team are Irvan Brar and Byron Keturakis, both of Surrey. The website norceca.net has links to follow the tournament.