Special Olympics brings spirited competition to UVM - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Special Olympics brings spirited competition to UVM

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BURLINGTON, Vt. - Special Olympics Vermont hosted it's largest competition of the season Sunday at the University of Vermont.

Athletes brought the competition Sunday.  "I'm here with a lot of my friends, teammates -- the sun is shining, my families here and we're just gonna try and do what we did last year," said Sean Fahey, a member of the Addison County Bocce Team.

Participants took to the field -- and water -- in four categories at the Special Olympics Vermont Summer Games -- aquatics, track and field, softball and bocce.

"One technique that I normally use is to think about what I'm doing. Another technique is I look at the ball," said Jessica Troberse, a Castleton Team member.

"The first thing is we try to make sure they're actually looking at the pallino before they throw the ball and then the biggest thing is that they're just having a good time and they're helping each other out," said Rooney Castle, Coach of the Chittenden Leaping Leopards Coach.

For many of these athletes, preparation and focus go a long way. "I look at the situation, I look at it on both sides and then I do it all in my head and I get like wicked close," said Ronnie Metcalf, a member of the Addison County Bocce Team.

"It's going very good. I just played my first game but I lost, but I'm working to win this one," said Jessica Troberse, a member of the Castleton team.

The three-day event is the organization's largest competition of the year, hosting more than 550 athletes, coaches and supporters. The Summer Games began Friday and will wrap up Sunday with awards in each sport. "Whether it's gold, silver or bronze -- it doesn't matter as long as everybody has a good time," Castle said. 

"I get a relationship with my team and I just really enjoy it," Mecalf said.

So like any game of friendly competition, it's not just about the win -- it's about how each athlete gets to the finish line.
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