Raab wrestles in national competition

Wrestler Kelsey Raab is taking her skills to the next level.

Wrestler Kelsey Raab is taking her skills to the next level.

She is heading to the Canada Summer Games in Sherbrooke, Que. from Aug. 2 to 17. All summer long she has trained with a team of 24 wrestlers from Team Alberta. Raab has trained in Saskatchewan, California and Alberta to hone her skills for the competition and she looks forward to the challenge. “I feel pretty confident actually. We’ve been training really hard this summer.”

Raab, 18, has competed in the Canada Winter Games in 2010 but this is the first time she really feels a part of a team. “It’s more team-oriented than anything, which is something I’m not used to.”

“I know every single player. I know their strengths, their weaknesses,” she explained.

She has also finally been able to get herself a new pair of wrestling boots. Her old pair had a large rip in them and with the use of a dart Raab was able to sew them back together. The last pair was being held together with duct tape and it took her some time to buy a new set.

There are three days of wrestling for Raab, who will compete against wrestlers from Manitoba, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northwest Territories and Saskatchewan. If she places first or second on the first two days, she will then wrestle in the finals on the third day.

Raab is also heading to the University of Calgary on a full athletic scholarship to their wrestling program. She looks forward to training under Lee Verling, the women’s Olympic national coach. “It’s a really intense wrestling program…They get a lot of really good athletes out of it.”

Raab wrestles from Aug. 6 to 8. More details can be found at www.jeuxducanada2013.ca/en/.