Now that seniors girls volleyball season has come to an end Humberside Huskies defender Melissa Humana-Paredes has a destination other than OFSAA in mind.
The soon-to-be graduating senior will be jet-setting around the world all in the name of beach volleyball with the Under-19 World Championships.
“I’ve never really traveled this much and it’s good to start so young,” she said.
Training in Spain, the Worlds in Portugal, a tournament in Puerto Rico and even more matches in British Columbia and Alberta, Humana-Paredes is definitely going to give her passport a working over.
“I’m barely going to be in Toronto,” she said. “It’s going to be really exciting.”
The only downside though, is she will no longer be with teammate Victoria Altomare, who she was paired with for five years, as stipulated by the Canadian Beach National Team.
“We were told that Victoria and I were both defenders so for our future it’s in our benefit to play with someone who is power so that we can fully commit to being defenders,” she said.
Admittedly the split was hard, but with her preparation — twice-a-week beach, twice-a-week weight training — and her new partner, Scarborough native Jen Cross, she’s optimistic they’ll both dig in.
“With a new partner and new game plan, I’m hoping to do really well because I experienced it last year,” Humana-Paredes said. “I’m pretty excited to go back this year and to hopefully to do better.”
That’s not to say she forgotten about her academics. She plans on continuing her studies in university at York.
As for Humberside, this 2009-10 was her most memorable.
“This season was pretty good,” she said. “We were hoping to go to OFSAA, and we knew it was going to be a hard road because we were pretty young.
“We didn’t make it, but we made it so far,” she added. “We’ve never made it that far before so it was a big accomplishment for all of us.”
And Humana-Paredes has every bit of faith that her fellow Huskies will continue their pursuit in her stead.
“Humberside has such great girls,” she said. “I think they’ll do well next year. They have a pretty good team.”