Langley Mustang Hannah Rolfe will be Blue later this year – and that’s a good thing.
When fall rolls around, the Walnut Grove Secondary Grade 12 student-athlete heads off to the University of Toronto, where she’ll compete for the varsity Blues track and field team.
Rolfe said she chose the U of T based on the university’s “stellar academics, impeccable coaching and the atmosphere of the team and campus.”
“I’m so excited for next year to be competing as a Blue,” Rolfe said.
Rolfe becomes the third Mustang to sign this season to compete at the collegiate level.
“Hannah is an outstanding athlete and has worked hard for so many years,” Mustangs head coach Dwayne Lotnick noted. “She’s an amazing talent that is going to excel at the next level.”
Rolfe’s track career elevated to a higher stratosphere this past August when she won the Western Canada Summer Games high jump competition with a leap of 1.71 metres.
She called the 2015 Games in Wood Buffalo, Alta., “a lot of fun.”
“It was a great experience to be on Team BC with my friends,” Rolfe said. “Truthfully I wasn’t expecting to win, never mind attain a new personal best.”
When both happened, she said she was “elated.”
Winning Western Canada Summer Games gold and signing a university track scholarship is the end result of nearly a decade of dedication for Rolfe, who started with the Mustangs when she was eight years old.
“My mom signed me up, convinced I’d do well,” Rolfe recalled. “Initially I was doubtful but after my first season in the junior development program run by Kevin Harrison, I grew to like it very much.”
She took a liking to a sport that comes naturally to her.
“The sprinting aspects primarily, then soon after, high jump became one of my better events, as well,” Rolfe said, adding, “I recall my first competition and being very nervous but managed to walk away with a third place in the high jump…”
The U of T wasn’t the only school that showed interest in Rolfe for the fall of 2016 – there was also Mississippi State University, Long Island University, the University of British Columbia and University of Alberta.
In the end, Rolfe decided the Toronto was her best choice.
That said, she is taking a modest approach to the next chapter of her track career.
“I really don’t know what to expect out of my first year of collegiate competition,” Rolfe said. “I’m anxious to see how high the competition level is and to rise to the occasion. I’m very excited to start training with U of T, as well. I believe I’m ready for the next part of my journey at the collegiate CIS level.”
To prepare for the fall, Rolfe plans to compete in the University of Washington Open meet, the Oregon Relays, and, if all goes well, the B.C. high school provincial championships followed by the junior nationals in the summer.
One constant is the family support provided by her parents Sandy and Trent and younger brother Alex.
“My parents have always been extremely supportive of my training and academic goals,” Rolfe said. “Without their support I surely wouldn’t be the athlete I am today, I’m so thankful for their love and encouragement through the years.”
Fifteen-year-old Alex is also an athlete, and plays hockey at Yale Secondary.
“He has an undeniably bright future ahead of him and is doing exceptionally well goaltending this year on Yale’s U15 team,” Rolfe said.