She’s just been named Canada West Female Athlete of the Year for 2017-18 after excelling at both rugby and wrestling, while in the running for a prestigious national sports award, but her parents make sure her marks stay up there.
University of Calgary student Temitope Ogunjimi moved to Canada from Nigeria at the age of 10, and it was a physical education teacher in her first year of junior high school that immediately saw potential.
“You should try wrestling, the actual sport,” Ogunjimi told The Homestretch on Thursday of that teacher’s encouragement.
“I think you would crush it.”
Then in high school she was introduced to rugby.
“The moment I stepped on the field I knew. This is it. I am definitely going to love this one too.”
But hold up, her parents told her.
“My parents are big advocates for education. I always wanted to pursue my sports. My parents said, ‘Cool, but you have to make sure your grades are up to par,'” Ogunjimi said with a laugh.
She says soccer was the most popular sport in Nigeria growing up.
“Nigeria also has a thriving wrestling team, but at that time I had no clue that there was such a thing.”
Sports a great way to integrate, she says
And now she’s starting to get the recognition she deserves. She can now add Canada West Female Athlete of the Year to her resume.
“On the pitch, the Calgary native helped turn the Dinos into a conference power, winning back-to-back CW titles to end her career,” Canada West said this week.
“As a wrestler, Ogunjimi was both a conference and national champion in 2017-18.”
And she’s now in the running for the national BLG award for U Sports female athlete of the year. She’ll find out if she won the prize June 4.
“Sports are always a great way to get integrated with the community. My mom was really happy because I got to make some friends and not just sit around and do homework all day.”
With files from The Homestretch and CBC’s Ellis Choe
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Sherwood Park is a large hamlet in Alberta, Canada within Strathcona County that is recognized as an urban service area. It is located adjacent to the City of Edmonton’s eastern boundary, generally south of Highway 16 (Yellowhead Trail), west of Highway 21 and north of Highway 630 (Wye Road). Other portions of Sherwood Park extend beyond Yellowhead Trail and Wye Road, while Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) separates Refinery Row to the west from the balance of the hamlet to the east.
Sherwood Park was established in 1955 on farmland of the Smeltzer family, east of Edmonton. With a population of 70,618 in 2016, Sherwood Park has enough people to be Alberta’s seventh largest city, but technically retains the status of a hamlet. The Government of Alberta recognizes the Sherwood Park Urban Service Area as equivalent to a city.
Sherwood Park, originally named Campbelltown, was founded by John Hook Campbell and John Mitchell in 1953 when the Municipal District of Strathcona No. 83 approved their proposed development of a bedroom community east of Edmonton. The first homes within the community were marketed to the public in 1955. Canada Post intervened on the name of Campbelltown due to the existence of several other communities in Canada within the same name, so the community’s name was changed to Sherwood Park in 1956.
The Sherwood Park Urban Service Area is located in the Edmonton Capital Region along the western edge of central Strathcona County adjacent to the City of Edmonton. The majority of the community is bound by Highway 16 (Yellowhead Highway) to the north, Highway 21 to the east, Highway 630 (Wye Road) to the south, and Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) to the west. The Refinery Row portion of Sherwood Park is located across Anthony Henday Drive to the west, between Sherwood Park Freeway and Highway 16. Numerous developments fronting the south side of Wye Road, including Wye Gardens, Wye Crossing, Salisbury Village and the Estates of Sherwood Park, are also within the community. Lands north of Highway 16 and south of Township Road 534/Oldman Creek between Range Road 232 (Sherwood Drive) to the west and Highway 21 to the east are also within the Sherwood Park urban service area.