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Wennesberg heading Down Under

Waupaca junior raising funds for trip

By Greg Seubert

A concussion has sidelined Madi Wennesberg for part of the basketball season.

However, that’s not stopping the Waupaca High School junior from making plans to head to Australia this summer to participate in the Down Under Hoops Classic.

She’s currently raising money for the trip, scheduled for July 14-23.

Wennesberg would be the second Waupaca basketball player to compete in the 16-team tournament, which includes teams from the United States and Australia.

Senior Brandon Wanty competed last year and his team of Wisconsin players ended up winning the tournament.

“I heard about Brandon doing it last year,” Wennesberg said. “I know I have a lot going on in the summer and Brandon told me it was an opportunity that I couldn’t pass up.”

The Down Under Hoops Classic is part of the Down Under Games, which also includes competition in football, cross country, golf, track and volleyball.

The trip will include two days of practice before the two-day tournament, as well as sight-seeing and a trip to a wildlife sanctuary.

Wennesberg averaged 4.3 points a game for the Comets before her concussion.

“I’ve been out for three weeks and I hate not being there to support the girls,” she said. “I’m not allowed at the games yet because it’s too much. It’s definitely been a step back because if I try to do a physical activity, I’ll get a little dizzy. I’ll catch up with time.”

Wennesberg, who also plays volleyball, hopes to return to the lineup within two weeks to finish out the season.

Although the trip is five months down the road, Wennesberg expects to be ready to play.

“I’m going to start working at Bethany, so I’ll practice after work,” she said. “I’ll shoot around a lot and I’m going to talk to my coach and see if she has any time to practice with me a little. We have a gym in our basement, so I’ll make sure I’m in shape.”

Wennesberg is currently collecting donations for the trip.

“The fundraising’s going pretty good,” she said.

Anyone interested in contributing can contact Wennesberg’s mother, Heather, at 715-281-6349. Checks should made out to Down Under Sports.

Donations can also be made online at https://downundersports.com/URD-WBP and the deadline for donations is Sunday, May 12.

“I’ve thought about it a lot lately,” Wennesberg said. “It’s the opportunity of a lifetime, especially to go to a different country and meeting new people. I’ve been to Mexico once and Canada, but going across the world, that’s something else.”

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