By Cole Parkinson
For Taber Times
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
While it may not look or feel like traditional football weather for southern Alberta, one Taberite is gearing up for some football come next month. Carson Becker was selected to represent Football Alberta U16 at Football Canada’s U16 Western Challenge from July 4-8 in Regina, Saskatchewan.
Selected as a defensive back, Becker joins six other players — John-Mikel Degamo (Bonnyville Bandits), Durnin Dyer (Spruce Grove Cougars), Ryder Frampton (Airdrie Raiders), Linkin Pedersen (Calgary Colts), Natte Ryning (Sherwood Park Wolverines), and Ryder Small (Sherwood Park Rams) — at the position.
“A few things that stood out about Carson — his work ethic, skill and desire to want to learn. Carson is always around the football. He covers from numbers to numbers, we are excited to have him part of our football team,” explained Derek Fink, head coach for Football Alberta U16.
Alberta kicks off their schedule on July 5 with a 4 p.m. kickoff against British Columbia while Saskatchewan takes on Manitoba in the late game. The winners of the two games will then go head to head on July 8 for gold at 7 p.m. while the losers of the first games will play for bronze at 4 p.m. In 2022, Saskatchewan took home the gold medal when they beat B.C. 22-10 in the gold medal game. Alberta hopes to claim the championship for the first time since 2018 when they did it against Manitoba in Edmonton.
With his lineup ready to rock, Fink is excited about what this team can bring to the U16 Challenge. Looking at Taber’s lone representative, Fink expects to see Becker bring his physicality to the gridiron over the two games.
“Carson is also a very physical presence on the football field, extremely athletic. We are looking forward to him performing on the football field,” he added.
For more information on the 2023 Western Regional Challenge, including rosters for all of the teams, visit https://footballcanada.com/event/2023-western-challenge/. To live stream the games, visit youtube.com/footballcanada1884