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Elliot Bailey

Elliot Bailey, Political Science

Elliot Bailey, Political Science

True to his English roots, Elliot Bailey’s first love growing up was football (a.k.a. soccer). But as he hit his teens, his future in athletics took a sharp turn. 

“I was playing football and suddenly the ball was so far away from me and I thought, I’m not going to do this anymore,” recalls Bailey, who is 6-foot-7.  “Meanwhile, the basketball hoop was getting closer.” 

There weren’t many high school basketball teams back home, so Bailey enrolled in a basketball academy that employs a training regimen for English players. Very few make it to North America, but Bailey had a connection: his coach knew Dave Smart, Carleton’s director of basketball operations, who could see Bailey’s potential. 

Gabrielle Francis

Gabrielle Francis, Political Science

Gabrielle Francis, Political Science

As a kid, Gabrielle Francis loved playing basketball, but it was in middle school when she realized how good she actually was.

“I was playing on my grade 8 team and then the coach from the grade 9 team invited me to play with them. And then the coaches from the junior team and the senior team asked me to play with them, so I was on every girls’ basketball team in my school.”

Francis grew up in Vancouver, so it was a big change to come to Ottawa. But she was motivated by both the athletic and academic opportunities.

Oceane Kounkou (full story to come)

Oceane Kounkou, BCoMS

Oceane Kounkou, BCoMS

I really like my PR class that I took last year, but all of my courses are really, really good because the teachers. The creative side of it — we have more creative ways in communications with assignments and just like topics I could take.

I started playing when I was eight. I just was always really tall. I was still growing so really awkward and like, I would fall sometimes. I just really fell in love with the game and the process of like being coachable, learning every day and just get better.

Because I grew up here in Gatineau, I was doing a lot of the Carleton summer camps. I probably did two or three and I really fell in love with their culture. I would see their games too. It is pretty busy schedule, but when you like it, it’s easier. And we’re all in this together too. We all have the same values and we care.

Missing shots, making mistakes — it’s part of the game. You can’t have a perfect game. So if something happens, it’s okay. We’re going to get it back on defense.

Wazir Latiff

Wazir Latiff, BGInS

Wazir Latiff, BGInS

“Latiff for threeeeee!”

That’s the call each time basketball star Wazir Latiff sinks one of his signature three-pointers in the Ravens Nest gymnasium. And he sank a lot of three-pointers, along with two-point field goals, and the occasional dunk–legs dangling from the hoop.

The 6-foot-2 Bachelor of Global and International Studies (BGInS) student from Vaughn, Ontario was a clutch player on the men’s basketball national championship team this year, with 249 points for the season. He brought not only immense skills, but a sense of energy and joy every time he stepped on the court.

Saturday, May 6, 2023 in , , ,
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