Surrey’s Otis Sandhu joins UBC’s soccer team

Coming off a national championship and an undefeated season, UBC Thunderbirds men’s soccer coach Mike Mosher has brought in an impressive six-player recruiting class that features a mix of local, national and international experience.

Adriano Clemente (Burnaby, BC), Niall Cousens (Vancouver, BC), Andrew Grange (Surrey, BC), Luigi Polisi (Coquitlam, BC), Mitchell Popadynetz (Nelson, BC) and Otis Sandhu (Surrey, BC) will all be joining the Canadian Interuniversity Sport champions for the 2013 season.

Clemente, Polisi, Popadynetz and Sandhu are all with Team B.C. competing at the Canada Summer Games in Sherbrooke, Que.

“We’re really excited about the players coming into our program,” said Mosher. “It’s not an easy team or program to come into and make so we’ve been pretty selective.”

Surrey`s Otis Sandhu is a six foot forward and is a graduate of Surrey’s Panorama Ridge Secondary and is a player who brings international experience to UBC having spent time in the youth systems of both Vicenza Calcio (Italy) and Stevenage FC (England).

“UBC is a prestigious university that offers a great education,” explained Sandhu on his decision to enroll at UBC. “Being able to play the game I love whilst achieving a great education excites me. I look forward to my time at this university.”

Polisi, Popadynetz and Sandhu all played club soccer for Coquitlam Metro-Ford and were members of the Under-18 team that won the B.C. Soccer Provincial Premier Cup over Mountain United on June 29.

“Competition for spots is always fierce, but we definitely see these players as impact players in the years to come given their backgrounds,” said Mosher. “We have three guys who’ve already won provincial championships this year and are at the Canada Games. The Coquitlam Metro-Ford program has been excellent in terms of producing players. We expect good things from Otis, Luigi and Mitchell given the environments they’ve been in.”

UBC will begin the 2013 Canada West regular season on Sept. 6 with a road game at Victoria. The team’s first home match will take place two days later on David Sidoo Field at Thunderbird Stadium against Fraser Valley.