Being deaf didn’t stop Alexis (Lexi) Cano from realizing her dreams. She is on the Women’s United States Deaf Soccer team and they just won the World Deaf Football Championship — the Deaf World Cup.
The team defeated Russia 3-0.
We did a story earlier about Cano, who is from Woodhaven, and the team’s drive to once again be champions. They took home the gold at the 2005, 2009, and 2013 Deaf Olympics and were the 2012 Deaf World Cup Champions. They have never lost a game.
They held on to that record at the Deaf World Cup held in Salerno, Italy. The USA women defeated the home country, Italy, by a score of 7-0. They defeated Poland 4-1, Great Britain 4-1 and Turkey 3-0 to get to the finals.
Competing in the World Deaf Football Championship is challenging for more reasons than the tough international competition. All players competing in deaf matches must remove all hearing aids before playing. They will play basically play in silence.
Cano and her teammates can’t hear their coach’s instructions or the referee’s decision or the roar of the crowd.
Cano wears a cochlear implant in her right ear and uses a hearing aid in her left. She does not use American Sign Language to communicate, but she can read lips.
“A lot of our communication is relied upon sign language and lip reading,” she told us earlier. “When we’re on the field our coach can’t just yell directions at us. A lot of it is looking back at the coach or paying attention to our teammates and being consciously aware of what we’re doing. It’s all about reading one another and trusting each other.
“None of us let our (lack of) hearing stop us. We work hard and because of our difference we work harder.”
Our congratulations to the team and a special congratulations and way to go to Detroit’s own Lexi Cano.