Photo Courtesy of Regina Water Polo Assocation

by Loni Trowell

Fifteen year old Sidney Cyca has been chosen to participate in the selection process for the women's Canadian Junior National Water Polo team. The team will travel to Rio De Janeiro, Brazil this summer for the 2008 Pan-American games.

Cyca, a grade 10 student at Regina's Dr. Martin Leboldus High School has been playing water polo with the Regina Water Polo Association since 2003, and is currently the goalie for the cadet and youth women’s team.

 Her love for the sport began by watching her sister play “I joined so I didn’t have to watch anymore.”

The young goaltender is one of 26 athletes competing at a training camp in March for a spot on the 15-member team. The majority of the western competitors will come from Alberta while all competitors from the east are out of Quebec or Ontario. 

Cyca is the only athlete from Saskatchewan to be invited to the training camp in Montreal. The selection followed her performance at a Western Canadian talent camp hosted by the Regina Water Polo Association in December. 

“I didn’t see (the selection) coming at all. It was a huge surprise,” she said.

But Cyca is no stranger to competition.  She has competed at the national level for the last two years; in Calgary, then in Montreal. But none of this would be possible without dedication to the game; she practices five nights per week, for two and a half hours each night.

“I’m very excited for this opportunity and I hope to make the best of it,” said Cyca.  

“She’s very dedicated and enthusiastic about the game,” said her long-time coach, Tara Richardson.

“Right now, I hope (water polo) will help me get scholarships and pay for school,” Cyca said. “In the future though…the Olympics would be nice!”

Regina has a history of producing national caliber athletes like Whitney Genoway and Jenna Crook, currently on Canada’s women’s national water polo team, as well as men’s national team members Noah Miller, Kevin Graham, and Robin Randall