Missouri wheelchair basketball goes international

1 month 5 days 5 hours ago Tuesday, October 15 2019 Oct 15, 2019 Tuesday, October 15, 2019 7:56:00 PM CDT October 15, 2019 in Sports
By: Garrett Tiehes, KOMU 8 Sports
loading

COLUMBIA – Missouri Wheelchair Basketball Coach Ron Lykins and player Colin Higgins were named to the 2019 ParaPan Am games in Lima, Peru.

The games were from August 23 to September 1.

Colin Higgins is a 29-year-old wheelchair basketball player from Rothesay, New Brunswick in Canada.

“I started playing wheel chair basketball in the winter of 2014, I injured my leg, my knee and my ankle in 2012, my mom’s a nurse, she works with an OT (occupational therapist) , who plays wheelchair basketball, she said ‘Hey come try it out.’ So, I tried, I fell in love and that kind of led me here,” Higgins said.

At first Higgins didn’t believe he was good enough to make the team.

“It took me awhile to figure out that’s what I was really going for, two of my mentors starting out were two national team players from my home providence or state,” he said. “So, I kind of heard stories of what it was all about, but I put them on such a pedestal that I really didn’t think I could get there.”

Since then, Higgins has made the Canadian national team three times, winning a silver medal in 2017 in Cali, Columbia.

On the other hand, Ron Lykins is one of the greatest U.S. coaches, winning 3 gold medals in the Paralympic games. Coaching in 17 International competitions, Lykins has made the gold medal round 15 times, and won 10 of them.

Even he believed in Higgins making the national team this year.

“I knew he would make it, I thought he would’ve made it, he had a really good year for us, he was already a good player before then, I think his year here he got even better,” Lykins said.

At the games, both team Canada and team USA made the gold medal round, Canada beating Columbia in the semifinal and U.S.A. beating Argentina.

Going into the gold medal game, Lykins didn’t focus on Higgins but knew he would be a part of Canada’s scheme.

“I knew if he played, he’d be difficult for us to match up with. I was happy for him; I was rooting for him the whole time except against us. Lykins said. [Higgins is] “Very hard nose, high intensity player, can do a lot of things, he can handle the ball, he can play around the perimeter, he can play in the post, both offensively and defensively, he can play in the half court, the full court. He’s the kind of kid that can do a lot of things and you can use him a lot of different ways.”

USA beat Canada in the final game, 76 to 43 Higgins had 4 points.

Both teams qualified for the Paralympic games in Tokyo 2020.

Higgins will use these recent games to prepare for Tokyo.

“Honestly I’ve never played in a game of that magnitude before, but it was a great learning experience, and hopefully we can take that into next year, and improve the color of our medal,” Higgins said.

The 2020 Paralympics games in Tokyo start August 25.

For now, Higgins and Lykins are focusing on the upcoming season for Missouri, the season opener is October 25, at the Intercollegiate Tournament in Marshall, Minnesota.

Last year the Mizzou Wheelchair basketball team finished fourth in the 2019 National Intercollegiate Wheelchair Basketball Tournament.

This year, the team looks to improve on their fourth-place finish.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA -- The Missouri Job Center will host a job fair on Wednesday at the Daniel Boone Regional Library. ... More >>
7 hours ago Wednesday, November 20 2019 Nov 20, 2019 Wednesday, November 20, 2019 3:45:00 AM CST November 20, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Crews are investigating a fire that started in the front room of a house Tuesday evening. ... More >>
13 hours ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 9:37:00 PM CST November 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Michael Demkowicz had tried everything to quit smoking. The patch. The pill. The gum. Nothing worked —... More >>
14 hours ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 8:35:29 PM CST November 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - On Tuesday night the search committee to find the new Vice Chancellor for Inclusion, Diversity and Equity held... More >>
16 hours ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 6:58:00 PM CST November 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A 911 dispatcher ordered all employees to evacuate the KOMU 8 News building on Highway 63 after a... More >>
16 hours ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 6:26:00 PM CST November 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The trial for a man accused in a 2018 deadly New Year's Day Waffle House shooting got underway... More >>
18 hours ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 4:26:00 PM CST November 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Cradle to Career Alliance unveiled its annual community report card at a luncheon Tuesday. The group... More >>
19 hours ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 3:19:00 PM CST November 19, 2019 in News
SWEET SPRINGS - For years, if someone needed emergency medical attention anywhere between Columbia and Kansas City, there's a good... More >>
20 hours ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 3:10:00 PM CST November 19, 2019 in News
COLE COUNTY - A pedestrian was killed after being struck by a car while attempting to cross U.S. 54 Tuesday.... More >>
20 hours ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 2:25:00 PM CST November 19, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Republican legislators and Republican Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt on Tuesday laid out legislative priorities... More >>
21 hours ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 1:25:55 PM CST November 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Police arrested a Columbia man after a car chase in north Columbia Tuesday morning. The chase began... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 11:14:00 AM CST November 19, 2019 in News
LAKE OZARK - A former teacher in the School of the Osage district pleaded guilty to having sexual contact with... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 10:27:00 AM CST November 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A judge ruled Monday that the University of Missouri's rule barring guns from its campuses is constitutional. ... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 8:23:00 AM CST November 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Randall Siddens, 34, passed away Monday afternoon from injuries sustained in a car crash on Grindstone Parkway in... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 7:14:00 AM CST November 19, 2019 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Two top national security aides who listened to President Donald Trump’s call with Ukraine are preparing to... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 5:36:46 AM CST November 19, 2019 in News
(CNN) -- UFC fighter Ben Askren, 35, announced his retirement Monday while on the ESPN podcast " Ariel Helwani's MMA... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 5:28:00 AM CST November 19, 2019 in Sports
NEW YORK (AP) — Derek Jeter is among 18 newcomers on the 2020 Hall of Fame ballot along with former... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 4:52:00 AM CST November 19, 2019 in Sports
NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (AP) — Human remains discovered in a Nebraska stock trailer appear to be from one of... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, November 19 2019 Nov 19, 2019 Tuesday, November 19, 2019 4:14:25 AM CST November 19, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 60°
12pm 62°
1pm 64°
2pm 65°
3pm 66°