SALT LAKE CITY -- A group of remarkable, blind Utah athletes are now national champions!
The team, sponsored by the Utah Foundation for the Blind, went undefeated and won the gold medal at the 2009 Goalball National Tournament in Florida.
The point of the game is to roll a goalball--like a heavy soccer ball-- past the opposing team. Players hear the ball because it has bells inside.
It is the Utah boys' first national championship since 2001.
Peter Ashton, of Provo, playing center for Utah, was named the tournament MVP as well as an all-American selection.
The four members of the team come from Utah high schools.
The Utah Foundation for the Blind and Visually Impaired conducts numerous programs for the blind including an extensive athletic program. Opportunities for instruction and competition are provided on a local and state level as well as an opportunity for dedicated blind athletes to move on to national and international competitions. Programs offered include wrestling, Judo, track & field, swimming, tandem biking, skiing, and goalball.