Ethan Ditzler had never given much thought to the idea of visiting Australia, that is until he was invited to play football there in next summer’s 25th annual Down Under Sports Tournaments.
The Polo High School junior running back/defensive back will play in two games on a trip that will include 7 days to compete and sightsee in Australia and a 3-day stop in Waikiki, Hawaii.
The tournaments include athletes from Australia, the United States and New Zealand.
“It will be a new experience, especially seeing a different country,” Ditzler said.
Ditzler, who had 375 rushing yards and 132 receiving yards for the 3-6 Marcos this past season, isn’t sure how he was chosen.
“I got home one day and had a letter in the mail from them saying I was selected to participate,” he said.
Ditzler was a bit leary about the invitation initially, thinking it may be too good to be true.
“I was anxious,” he said. “I started doubting it.”
His parents, however, were all for it.
“They both wanted me to try to go,” Ditzler said. “They were probably more for it than I was right off the bat.”
Ditzler is excited to play more football. He’s also excited about seeing new places and doing new things.
“We can go scuba diving, parasailing, to SeaWorld” he said. “We spend a day in Sydney and see the operahouse.”
The trip was far from all expenses paid. Ditzler had to raise some $6,000 to attend.
“I think I’m almost done getting the money I need,” he said.
The money was raised through donations and raffles for a pool table and Bears and Packers jerseys.
High school: Polo
Positions: Running back/defensive back
2012 stats: 375 rushing yards, 132 receiving yards