Whitney Gelin, head coach of the Greensboro College softball team, was selected to represent the United States in the upcoming Pan American Games handball qualification matches. Gelin was named to the 16-member national team that heads to Lake Placid, N.Y. in December to play Canada.
Should Team USA advance against Canada, the team will compete in next year’s Pan Am games. Team handball, an Olympic sport, is a very popular sport internationally. The Pan Am winner earns a slot in the 2012 London Olympics.
As a coach, Gelin is in her second year leading The Pride. She led GC to its best softball season in the Spring of 2010. GC won the USA South Tournament, and advanced to the NCAA Division Championships, both program firsts. She is also the strength and conditioning coach for Pride athletics and serves in a similar role for USA Handball.
Gelin, 25, has played team handball only since mid-2009, but in December 2009 she made the United States pre-Olympic handball team and competed in an international tournament. In preperation for the December action, Gelin travels to Chapel Hill twice each week to train with her club team: Team Carolina.
She is no stranger to top-level athletic competition. A 2007 graduate of the University of North Carolina, Gelin played softball for the Tar Heels. She was an academic team captain and four-year letter-winner. Gelin was awarded the Carroll Hustle Award in 2005.
Gelin was a double major in exercise and sport science, and psychology. She also was a three-time winner of UNC’s Iron Ram award, presented to the top five Carolina female athletes.
A native of Inverness, Fla., Gelin was a standout high school athlete at Citrus High School. She was a second team all-state selection in softball and two-time state weightlifting champion.
The Pride softball team opens its 2011 season Feb. 17 at home against Lynchburg College.