All in the soccer family
Lori Lancaster has a lifetime of memories from her experiences at the 1987 Cape Breton and 1989 Saskatoon Canada Summer Games a member of the Prince Edward Island women’s basketball team.
But Lancaster’s time at the Canada 2022 Niagara Summer Games as the Chef de Mission for Team Nova Scotia has blown those old memories out of the water.
Lancaster is sharing her experiences this time around with her daughter Ellie Lancaster, a goaltender on Team Nova Scotia’s women’s soccer team.
“It’s exceptionally cool,” Lori Lancaster said. “I’ve told her many times how proud we are of her and her achievements but being able to be in this environment — I have said to her there’s really no experience like a Canada Games experience — not just on the playing field but in the (Athletes’) Village and all those experiences of meeting athletes from other provinces and territories and experiencing going on to cheer on other teams.
“The experience itself is really remarkable and I’m so glad she’s able to experience this and I’m so glad to be able to share it with her.”
Ellie Lancaster, 17, choked back tears when asked what it meant to be able to share the experience with her mother.
“Just having her here for support, it’s crazy,” she said. “She’s one of my biggest role models . . . I feel so proud to be represent my province and having her here to see me and watch me play and support me on and off the field, it’s amazing to me.”
Ellie Lancaster has heard all about her mom’s experiences from 1987 and 1989.
“She said it was one of her best experiences ever in sport,” Ellie Lancaster said. “She remembers it to this day. Being able to experience it for myself is so cool because she was a two-time Canada Games player and following in her footsteps and going to Canada Games in a big accomplishment for me.
“I’m proud to follow what she’s done.”
Lori Lancaster has advised her daughter to cherish the experience.
“We’ve said to each other this really is a once in a lifetime opportunity, especially for us sharing this as family and daughter and mother. I said to her savour every minute, every moment because these memories will be some of your most memorable.”
Lori Lancaster, who works in Alumni Affairs at Mount Saint Vincent University, felt volunteering as a Chef de Mission was a no-brainer.
“I tell people I bleed sport. I’ve played it, I’ve coached it. This was a very unique opportunity I wanted to take advantage of. It’s really a dream roll to work with our provincial sport organizations and sports and being able to see them at their best at the Canada Summer Games,” she said.
Mother and daughter have been able to share some time away from the Games as well while in Niagara.
“The spectacular thing about these Games are the venues are so beautiful and unique, the Host Society has done an exceptional job with the venues,” Lori Lancaster said. “We’ve been to Niagara Falls and to Grimsby to watch the softball and the incredible Canada Games Park at Brock is exceptional.”
Mom was particularly pumped to watch her daughter record a shutout Tuesday night as Team Nova Scotia topped Team Newfoundland 2-0 in their first game.
“Today was a unique atmosphere in that you could really feel the energy,” Lori Lancaster said.
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