USA Games Spotlight: Jennifer Eckles

Team sports often provide a close knit community and friendships that last far beyond a single game or competition. For Jennifer Eckles, the Pomona Valley women’s basketball team delivers on all fronts.

Jennifer credits her friend, Nihan Uslu, for introducing her to Special Olympics Southern California. Together, the two are part of the eight-woman team selected to play in the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games this July in Seattle.

“It’s exciting,” said Jennifer, who has never traveled on an airplane before. “[I’m looking forward to meeting] new people and make new friends.

“It’s an honor. I get to represent Southern California and compete with the best.”

Jennifer, who also plays softball during the year, is grateful for the support SOSC provides its athletes and the way it has translated to her “everyday life.”

“It has given me the confidence and support I use,” she said. “No one judges or picks on me (here) – we are all friends.”

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