Schools cheer on sports stars

Let's acknowledge high school students who earned special recognition for their athletic achievements at the end of the last school year.

The start of fall is just a week away, so time to get back into routine and resume the Thorpe Report in its usual Saturday place. As usual, it’s hard to believe that summer went by so quickly. And on a similar note, I have to wonder where the 32 years have gone since I first started producing this column…

In any case, holidays are now done and a new school year is underway. So this week, let’s take care of some unfinished business and acknowledge and congratulate local high school students who earned special recognition for their athletic achievements at the end of the last school year.

Due to the labour dispute and resulting job action at the time, some secondary schools did not have their usual year-end athletic banquet, but most did recognize their top athletes.

Dover Bay Secondary last June honoured outstanding athletes from each grade level. Athletic director David Nelson sends word that Grade 8 winners were Max Reed, Miles Huynh and Jeff Webb for males, along with Hannah Ross, Elise Angelucci and Nyree McGonigle for females. Winners from Grade 9 were Christian Wigmore, Thomas Oxland and Peter Oxland for males, with Faye Tuck the female winner. Chosen from Grade 10 were Robbie Calvin and Emily Shires. From Grade 11, the outstanding male athlete was Keegan Lang and the outstanding female athletes were McKenzie Nicks and Gabby Jeffrey. Grade 12 recipients were Jon Bethell, Sean McKenzie, Vanessa Yates, Grace Tuck and Jamie Bassett.

Other special athletic presentations at Dover saw Brandon Kumar and Spencer Hiemstra named as recipients of the Neal McCormick spirit of sport award. The Bruce Mitchell athletic leadership award went to Hanna Scott, while the Jeet Purhar Award was shared by Amy Hsueh and Spencer Hiemstra for their participation in over a dozen different school sports.

Over at Wellington Secondary, athletic director Nicole McRae reports that Grade 8 female athlete of the year was Alyssa Mousseau and Grade 8 male athlete of the year was Joseph Almoete. Tyler Radelja was the school’s junior male athlete of the year, with Ally Keir and Kaitlyn Franklin sharing the honour of junior female athlete of the year. Named as male senior athlete of the year was Bradley Jenks, while senior female awards went to Mariah Van Sickle and Taelar Keir. Coaches awards were presented to Chelsea Clark and Dustin Olsen and named as the Wellington academic athlete of the year were Nicole Langford and Jin Han.

At Woodlands Secondary last year, Zed Malenica was the athletic director. That school chose to only give out a year-end athlete of the year award for senior girls and boys, Ksenia Malenica and Erik Van Waes.

Adam LaForest was athletic director at Nanaimo District Secondary School. He passed along news that plaques were presented to the top male and female athletes from different grade levels. As Grade 8 students, Sarah Lundy and Amelia Kazanowski shared the top female award, with Lucas De Vries named as top Grade 8 male athlete. From the junior age level, Miryam Basset and Jeremie Cheng were athletes of the year. Eric Lindsay received the nod as senior male athlete of the year and Leigh Richardson as senior female athlete of the year.

From out at Cedar Secondary, athletic director Rick Hart passed along news of year-end sports awards at that school. Honours for females went to Hannah Stannard as athlete of the year from Grade 8, Stefanie Talboys and Hailey Bradley as top junior girls and Megan Cawthorne as outstanding senior female athlete. Outstanding male athletes from Cedar were Colton Jajeunesse and Josh Bailey in Grade 8, Josh Seward and Victor Trinh as best junior athletes and Brandan McCarthy as top senior athlete.

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

Ian Thorpe writes about sports Saturdays.

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