Duiella bids for Canada

Ul­ti­mate star joins fel­low Bar­rie na­tive Con­nor Arm­strong on na­tional team

The Barrie Examiner - - SPORTS - STEPHEN SWEET SPE­CIAL TO THE EXAMINER

Ja­son Duiella had a dream of wear­ing the red and white.

The talented ath­lete from Bar­rie grew up want­ing to rep­re­sent Canada on the in­ter­na­tional stage, and now he’s got his chance.

Duiella was se­lected to the Cana­dian na­tional team for next Jan­uary’s World Fly­ing Disc Fed­er­a­tion (WFDF) World U24 Ul­ti­mate Cham­pi­onships in Perth, Aus­tralia.

“The try­out went great in Mon­treal,” said Duiella, who par­tic­i­pated in the se­lec­tion camp last month. “There was a lot of great tal­ent there, so it was in­ter­est­ing to see how my skill matched up com­pared to the whole east end here.

“There’s a ton of good ath­letes out there, so I’m just su­per thank­ful that I stood out enough to be able to crack the ros­ter.”

Duiella picked up ul­ti­mate on a late spring day in Grade 8 while at­tend­ing Al­go­nquin Ridge Ele­men­tary.

Since then, there’s been no stop­ping him.

“I started play­ing just at the end of ele­men­tary school, when one of my teach­ers showed me the game,” Duiella said. “I was for­tu­nate to be able to play it all the way through high school at In­nis­dale, and then was able to keep it go­ing in univer­sity, where I had some good ex­po­sure to the game and was re­ally able to im­prove over the years.”

But his de­sire to par­tic­i­pate on an in­ter­na­tional stage came about seven years ago.

“When I was watch­ing the Van­cou­ver 2010 Olympics, just see­ing the mag­ni­tude of com­pet­ing on the world stage for the Cana­dian ath­letes, I re­ally wanted to be in their role,” Duiella said. “I said to my dad, ‘I need a gold medal’.

“Un­for­tu­nately, ul­ti­mate hasn’t made it to the Olympics yet, but I’ve al­ways been fas­ci­nated with the world stage and mag­ni­tude of sports,” he added.

Duiella tried out for the na­tional open (un­der-24) team pre­vi­ously, but didn’t make the squad.

En­ter­ing his fi­nal year at Queen’s Univer­sity in Kingston, Duiella knew this was his last chance.

“I had to make it or my dream would slip,” Duiella said. “This was my last shot, so I was train­ing ex­tra hard and pumped that I could make it.”

Duiella will get to join a hand­ful of his team­mates from Queen’s on the squad, as well as a fa­mil­iar face. See | B2

SUBMITTED

Bar­rie na­tive Ja­son Duiella makes a leap­ing grab dur­ing ul­ti­mate com­pe­ti­tion. He was re­cently named to Canada’s na­tional team.

SUBMITTED

Bar­rie na­tive Ja­son Duiella, re­cently named to Canada’s na­tional team, will travel to Aus­tralia in Jan­uary for the World Fly­ing Disc Fed­er­a­tion’s world un­der-24 cham­pi­onship.

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