By Ottawa Sports Pages, For Louis-Riel Rebelles
Maryse Miaro’s senior year at Louis-Riel high school started off on the wrong foot – literally – but now, her future in sports and academics is looking brighter than ever.
The recently-graduated Rebelle is now set to join the Ontario Tech University Ridgebacks this fall, but a year ago, Miaro’s basketball dreams didn’t look as promising. In September, the 17-year-old guard tore her Achilles tendon during a practice.
“Not being able to play for a long period of time was a strange experience,” highlights Miaro, who was used to training most days of the week before the pandemic as part of the Louis-Riel Girls’ Basketball Academy.
To make the best out of an unfortunate situation, the Rebelles held virtual workouts to keep up their normal training volume, practicing skills like dribbling and shooting in their basements and garages. Miaro says help from her coach André Desjardins and her parents kept her motivated to keep playing the sport that she loves.
“I would play basketball hopping on one leg. I had that mentality of still being an athlete, even though I wasn’t able to participate as much,” she notes. “I felt like I had more time to work on my individual skills. And I think it helped me develop self-discipline.”
In overcoming the challenges of both a serious injury and a pandemic, Desjardins says Miaro has gained the resilience needed to excel in varsity sports.
“She really came into her own in the last year and a half,” signals the past Team Ontario and Team Canada coach. “I think she’s going to be someone who’s going to bring a lot of energy to a group – good physicality, really great teammate.”
Miaro credits the Louis-Riel Sports-Study program with preparing her to take on the challenges of the past year.
“The teachers really do care so much about you succeeding in your sport,” underlines Miaro, who will rejoin past Rebelles teammate Bilan Khadar, a 2019 grad, at Ontario Tech. “They’re really involved in your success and willing to go the extra step for you. It wasn’t a ‘me, myself and I’ thing to succeed – the school as a whole wants to see you succeed. I think that really sets it apart.”
Desjardins feels “super proud of her, and the undergraduate girls, and how they did this year. I’m excited to see what the next chapter is,” he adds.
The next chapter for Miaro will be on the court in Oshawa. Along with living on campus in the fall, she says she’s most excited for the opportunity to play against university athletes.
“Being able to play at a higher level against these women that have been training their whole lives to be where they are now – I’m so ready to play.”
Learn more about the Louis-Riel Girls’ Basketball Academy in this brochure and other available Sports-Study streams at: https://ottawasportspages.ca/louis-riel-sports/