Michelle Faz­zari

The Hamilton Spectator - - ROAD TO RIO 2016 -

TEAM: Wrestling WEIGHT: 58 kg. BORN: July 10, 1987 SCHOOL: Cayuga Sec­ondary School, Brock Univer­sity

BORN HAMIL­TON, IN Faz­zari won a pro­vin­cial high school cham­pi­onship for Cayuga a cou­ple of years af­ter tak­ing up wrestling on a dare.

She got into the sport se­ri­ously when she at­tended Brock and won three gold medals at the CIS cham­pi­onships and com­peted at the 2008 world univer­sity cham­pi­onships.

Her first in­ter­na­tional ex­pe­ri­ence came in 2006 when she won sil­ver at the Pan Amer­i­can ju­nior cham­pi­onships and bronze at the Pan Am se­nior cham­pi­onships.

She also placed in the top 10 in the world cham­pi­onships in 2012, ’14 and ’15, and has been ranked as high as sec­ond in the world. She won the gold medal at the 2013 Jeux de la Fran­co­phonie.

She made her first national team de­spite shoul­der surgery two years ear­lier that doc­tors felt would end her wrestling ca­reer. And she com­peted at the Pan Am Games just three weeks af­ter she had knee surgery and was un­able to con­tinue af­ter her first match.

But head­ing into the Olympics she’s had an ex­cel­lent sea­son, qual­i­fied for the Olympics — she was in Lon­don in 2012 as a train­ing part­ner for medal­list Tonya Ver­beek — and hopes to be a medal con­tender in Rio.

“You don’t just want to go to the Olympics,” she told The Spec­ta­tor’s Scott Radley. “You want to do well.”

Michelle Faz­zari: A dare started it

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