U SPORTS sits down with one key athlete, coach, and staff member of each U SPORTS athletic program in our interview series “Getting to know…”
- Name: Tristan Frei
- School: University of Regina
- Sport: Men’s Hockey
- Position: Centre
- Year of eligibility: 4
- Program: Education
- Hometown: Regina, Sask.
1. What attracted you to U of Regina?
Moving away at the age of 17 to play junior hockey played a role in me returning to my hometown and attending the University of Regina. Coach Todd Johnson did a fantastic job showing me all the resources that a University of Regina student-athlete would benefit from and it so far has played a significant role in my development as an athlete.
2. What’s your favourite memory, and your greatest athletic achievement as a U SPORTS student-athlete?
My favourite memory and greatest athletic achievement as a USPORTS student-athlete was playing for Team Canada in Krasnoyarsk, Russia at the 2019 FISU Winter Universiade. Having the opportunity to play for the maple leaf and meet U SPORTS student-athletes from all over Canada was an experience I will forever cherish. Winning a bronze medal at the tournament is also an accomplishment I am very proud of!
3. Where are you hoping your path will take you after university?
I hope that I can continue to play hockey for as long as I can. I would like to possibly play hockey overseas and use hockey as a platform to travel the world. I have two years of eligibility left and I plan to use those years to improve and provide myself the best opportunity to move on and play hockey at the next level after university.
If I am not playing after university, I would still like to be involved in the game, such as coaching or running camps in the community. The sport of hockey has provided me so much in my life and I am forever grateful for it. It is a priority in my life to give back in any way that I can.
4. Who’s had the greatest influence on your athletic career?
My mom, dad and my brother are three outstanding individuals who have impacted and played a major influence on my athletic career. In anything that I have done, they have shown constant support and encouragement. Without my family, I don’t think I would have made it this far in my hockey career.
5. Who is someone in the sports world, past or present, with whom you’d love to have dinner with? Why?
If I could have dinner with someone in the sports world it would be Sidney Crosby, and not just because of his talents, but because I believe he is a great ambassador for the sport. I really admire Sidney’s leadership skills and the way he conducts himself off the ice. From watching him, he is clearly the hardest working player on the ice every game and he demonstrates what it takes to be the best.
6. What is your pre-game ritual? Do you have any superstitions/idiosyncrasies around preparing yourself for a game?
I don’t really have any pre-game rituals or superstitions. I try to ensure that I get a good meal and a real good sleep the night before the game. On game day, I go to school for a few hours in the morning and then I head home and have a two-hour nap. I eat at 4:10 p.m. and I am usually at the rink around 4:45 p.m.
One thing I always make sure I have is my AirPods. Music is a must for me! I like to stretch for 20 minutes then just hang out in the room, tape my stick and clean my visor. I like to go onto the bench after I tie my skates, and I try to visualize plays on the ice such as breakouts, forechecks, goals, etc.
7. What’s your go-to song to get pumped up for practice or a game?
I like all genres. Usually the night before a game I will make a playlist for the next day. Listen to the playlist on the way to the game in the car and in the room. I don’t have a specific song, whatever I am feeling that day.
8. What’s your favourite social media account to follow?
Although I rarely post anything on it, Facebook is my favourite social media account because I use it as a resource to communicate with my ex-teammates, billets, friends and family members.
I think it is important to stay connected in people’s lives, and although we may not live geographically close anymore, Facebook allows for one to stay in touch and aware of what is going on in other people’s lives! That is why I like it!
9. If you could try another sport, what would it be and why?
If I could try another sport, it would probably be basketball. I love watching the NBA throughout the year, because of the athletic ability the players have.
10. What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you as an athlete?
Most embarrassing thing that has happened to me as an athlete would be falling on a penalty shot in bantam, but we still ended up winning the game thankfully!