Former Wisconsin womens soccer standout, Amy Vermeulen (2001-05) will head to Beijing, China as an alternate for the Canadian Olympic team. Vermeulen is one of four former Badgers that will be competing in Beijing.
It truly is an honor to represent your country at any event, but the Olympics are in its own category as far as how proud I feel, said Vermeulen.
A forward, Vermeulen was 22 years old when she won her first match with Canadas senior team on August 25, 2006. Now 24 years old, the Saskatoon, Saskatchewan native will reach new heights at the Olympics.
I've been with the team for a couple years now since we've been based out of Vancouver, BC, said the UW record holder for career assists. So far it's been amazing. Going to the Olympics is a first for everyone on the team, since unfortunately we didn't qualify last time. The atmosphere among the group right now is filled with excitement and anticipation more than anything else.
The team left for Singapore on Monday (July 21) to play New Zealand and Singapore in exhibition games. From there Vermeulen and the Canadian team will head to Beijing, China on July 30. The first Olympic game for the Canadians will kick off on Aug. 6 against Argentina. After its opening match, Canada will face hosts China and then Sweden. The team will remain in China through Aug. 26.
Vermeulen intends to make the best of her time while in China with any free time she may have.
I would love to go see other competitions. Basically I would like to experience China and the Olympics to its fullest, so hopefully it will just work itself out.
At Wisconsin, the multi-sport athlete excelled in both hockey and soccer before eventually choosing her path in soccer upon leaving UW. Vermeulen helped the womens soccer team garner a Big Ten Tournament title, the programs second-ever, back in 2005. The forward broke a 12-year school record for the most assists in a career, after tallying seven her senior season, for a combined 27 career assists. She also ranks third in career goals (36) and points (99), is one of 10 players in program history to score a hat trick and is just one of five players to have two career hat tricks.
Playing at Wisconsin definitely allowed me to develop both my skills and knowledge of the game, said Vermeulen. I attribute a lot of my success right now to my years there.