City’s football players hit gridiron

Registration is being held, practices are underway and another season of minor football is just about set to kick off.

Registration is being held, practices are underway and another season of minor football is just about set to kick off.

Football Nanaimo’s upcoming campaign involves a program of spring tackle football being offered for players 8 to 14 years of age. Also this year, a flag football league is being added for U16 and U19 players. Fall tackle football is scheduled to start in early July.

Practice sessions for the spring tackle league have already begun at Pioneer Park on Dover Road.Cost for registration starts at $95 for players aged 8-10 or 11-12 The 13-14-year-old division has a registration fee of $125. For the upcoming flag football season, registration for the U16 division has been set at $50 and at $60 for the U19 category. Players can sign up at the football clubhouse at Pioneer Park every Tuesday from 6-7:30 p.m.

Planning for the coming football season started with the association’s annual general meeting, where Aileen Mutch Faickney was returned for a second term as president. Awards were also given out at the AGM, as top minor football coaches and players from each age level during last season were honoured.

From the peewee Lions, team MVP for last year was Dakota Cullum. Best offensive player was Nolan Skolsky, while best defensive player was Owen McKee and best lineman was Kurt Schnablegger. The most improved player was Blake Sinclair, while Xander Merx was named as most sportsmanlike and Kashai Tourond took home the coaches’ achievement award.

Winners from the junior bantam Lions were led by Aaron Kutra as the most valuable player, Zachary Taylor as most sportsmanlike and Brian Massick as most improved player. Dylan Strutt was picked as the best offensive player, Steen Rasmussen as best defensive player and Spencer Strutt as best lineman. The coaches’ achievement award went to Ryan Miller.

Player awards for the bantam Redmen saw James Dennis-Orr presented with the Mike Gurr Memorial Trophy as most valuable player. Chosen as best offensive lineman was Alexander Bihari, while Caleb Wassell was best defensive lineman. Jake Borserio was tabbed as best offensive back, Derion Hughes as best defensive back and Cory Fletcher as best linebacker. Named as best receiver was Jesse Elliot, with Brandon White the rookie of the year. Branton Thomson was the most sportsmanlike player and Riley Savard received the Dan Costello Memorial coaches’ achievement award.

From the midget Redmen squad, Dylan Tucker was selected as most valuable player. James Danylchuk took home the award for best offensive back, while Chae Faickney was picked as best offensive lineman and Jon Evenson as best receiver. Best defensive lineman was Kento Takata, best linebacker Adrian Keller and best defensive back was Trent Wright. Chosen as most improved player was Tory Martin, with Jaden MacLennan the most sportsmanlike player and Tyler Gavin as rookie of the year. The Silva Trophy coaches’ achievement award was shared by Johah Wassell and Devon Carli. Recipient of the Dave Gilmour/Casey Smith Memorial Scholarship was Chae Faickney.

Whatever your sport, a reminder in closing to play your hardest, play fair, and show good sportsmanship.

Ian Thorpe writes about sports Saturdays.