USA Games Update
As you know we are now less than 2 months away before the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games in Orlando Florida and Team Oregon athletes, unified partners and their coaches are finding a variety of creative ways to practice and prepare for competition.
As Special Olympics Oregon progresses toward returning to in-person programming, more traditional practicing opportunities will soon open up. In the meantime, local school programs, volunteer coaches and community agencies and facilities are stepping in to make sure our athletes are strong and ready for the Games.
In Bend, Team Oregon athletes and unified partners are able to practice twice per week together with the help of their 3 coaches who are also teachers at the Unified Champion School, Bend Senior High.
Bowling athlete, Brandi Wriglesworth has been practicing weekly with a friend in a local bowling league, while her bowling teammate, Nancy Roberts says she is “happy and thankful” to practice her bowling at Lower Columbia Bowl in Astoria, joined by her Team Oregon Coach monthly for check-in practices.
Track and Field athlete, Harley Lyberis, who recently graduated from Newport High School has been able to run or workout daily with UCS teacher, Jill Sellers who is also a Team Oregon delegate working with our YLE athlete and unified partner, Annabeth and Lilliebelle Bassingthwaite. Harley’s athletics teammate, Howard Day, our Team Oregon pentathlete has been working out with his former PSW and local coach to gain endurance, strength and speed for his 5 events, including the 800-meter run. This past week, while it was snowing, Howard achieved his entry time of 3:11.22. Howard will be the first Oregon athlete to compete with the 800-meter run as one of the pentathlon events.
In swimming, Coach Kathy Hinz has been making the rounds, working with her athletes at their local swim facilities. At the Beaverton Swim Center, Coach Kathy recently arranged an event to cheer on athlete, Danny Tran as he prepares for his 50 meter backstroke event. He is working hard toward breaking the 40 second mark and he was joined by many family members, friends, former coaches and even one of our most respected and admired, long time, Washington County swim coach and coach trainer, Sharon Patapoff.
For more Team Oregon updates and highlights, keep an eye on our social media!