Bobcats bring in Swiss standout

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Photo: Brandon University Athletics

BRANDON – The Brandon University women’s volleyball team is eager to see what Michelle Egger can bring to the Bobcats.

The 5-foot-10 outside hitter from Switzerland has arrived in the Wheat City to begin training camp with BU ahead of the 2017-18 Canada West campaign.

The 18-year-old had never stepped foot on Canadian soil until making the trip to the Wheat City, but a solid first impression was made.

“It is a huge life opportunity to come to Brandon to succeed in the classroom and play volleyball,” said Egger. “Brandon is a lot different from Switzerland. It is sure flat here compared to my country where there is a lot of mountains, but I like the city a lot so far.”

Egger’s game evolved indoors with VBC Aadorf where she became a solid contributor over six seasons in the club system. She also earned a silver medal at the U19 Swiss national beach volleyball championship.

Interim Bobcat coach Kevin Neufeld believes their newest international recruit has the right mix of potential and experience to succeed.

“Michelle is a creative and dynamic player and we hope she can make a big contribution on the court,” said Neufeld. “She has played a lot of beach and indoor volleyball and has a good skill set.”

In volleyball circles in her home country, the Egger’s are synonymous with the sport with her dad coaching the Swiss men’s team to a bronze medal at the 2004 Olympics in beach volleyball.

“My parents and my brother are all tied to the sport. I do not think I had any other choice, but to be a volleyball player,” added Egger with a laugh.

A strong family connection and a passion to play contributed to Egger’s decision to explore the option of playing at the U SPORTS level.

Becoming a Bobcat was solidified after former all-Canadian and Swiss star Sebastien Steigmeier spoke highly about his experience at BU to Egger. Steigmeier played two seasons with the Bobcats, which included being named BU’s Male Athlete of the Year in 2014-15.

“In my opinion, Sebastien is the best player in Switzerland and everybody knows him. When he said it was cool to play at Brandon University I was sold on the opportunity right away,” said Egger.

Egger and the Bobcats begin their regular season by visiting the Manitoba Bisons on October 21-22. BU’s first home dates are October 27-28 against the Saskatchewan Huskies.