Cougar captain had summer soccer excursion to Greece

Cal Babiash, at far left, poses with his Rush International teammates in Athens.

Centennial soccer player Cal Babiash enjoyed a trip to Greece to play four matches with an American team and soak up Greek culture this summer.

A junior co-captain with the Cougars, he was one of 15 players chosen for the Rush International Select team. His club team, Twin Cities Rush, is part of a national organization, and the players were picked from Rush teams around the country, in stages at the local, regional and national levels.

“It was an awesome opportunity to represent my club and the state of Minnesota, and find so many lifelong friends,” said Babiash about the experience July 16-27,

The Select team played two games on the Greek island of Lesvos, known for its beaches, and two in Athens. In Lesvos, they lost to an academy associated with a pro team 1-0, then tied the same team 5-5. In Athens, they won both games. They were a U16 facing U18 and U19 teams. “It was just a great experience to play those guys,” he said

Team bonding included “making up raps on the bus trips, and playing volleyball or chilling on the beach,” Babiash said. They had a bike tour of the streets of Athens to learn about the ancient city’s history. He especially enjoyed the beach in Mytilini. “I got to snorkel and see all the fish, and the water was quite refreshing.” 

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