Heading into her debut appearance at the national wrestling championships, Alexia Seal was hoping to reach the podium.
The 15-year-old Grade 9 student at Mission Secondary never dreamed she’d achieve that goal twice over, and that she’d earn the right to represent Canada.
At the Canadian cadet (age 15-16) and juvenile (16-18) championships in Guelph, Ont. earlier this month, Seal opened with a bronze medal in the 40-kilogram cadet girls freestyle competition.
She followed that up with a silver the next day in the FILA cadet trials, which decides priority access for national team wrestling assignments.
She’s the first alternate for the Pan American Championships in Brazil, and will have the opportunity to attend other tournaments and training camps with the national team over the summer.
“When I started in wrestling, which was just a year and a half ago, I never thought in my mind that I would end up on the Canadian team,” enthused Seal, who won bronze at the B.C. high school provincials in March.
“At first, I didn’t have very much technique, but I was strong enough to overpower my opponents. After a while, I developed my technique, and it’s come a long way since I first started.”