Loud cheers were heard as the top athletic awards were handed out Wednesday at the Elmira District Secondary School athletic banquet, held at Lions Hall in Elmira.
“It’s all about celebrating the excellence in sports for both the athletes and the coaches,” said Dale Roberts, head of the physical education department at EDSS.
The night saw team coaches praising and celebrating their student athletes as they presented the most valuable player awards as well as the major athletic awards which included manager of the year, both the sportsmanship and sportswoman awards, most improved male and female athlete and outstanding male and female athlete awards for both junior and senior students.
Top honours went to Lydia Frey and Brandon Seip who both took home the outstanding senior athlete awards and also acted as the masters of ceremony for the night.
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Seip would also share the Colin Hood OFSAA School sport Award with Laura Jane Weber. The award is presented to one graduating male and one graduating female, who throughout their high school career have been committed to the success of sports at their school and their teams.
Frey was the recipient of the Ernest Kendall Award for Outstanding Athletics and Academics for both her commitment to sports and academia.
“[Frey] is an amazing young woman and it has been great to watch someone with her leadership abilities through out the years,” said Roberts. “She truly deserves the success she has had and earned everything she got tonight.”
Roberts also had praise for her coaching team saying, if it were not for them volunteering their time, the athletic programs at the school would not be as successful or popular as they are.
“I am very impressed with the number of athletes we have at our school, we have 356 students who actively participate in sports and I am very happy to see more kids finding interest in not just one sport but multiple sports,” said Roberts.
During the course of the night guest speaker Canadian beach volleyball player, Christian Redman, told the young athletes his story of success and how to never give up on your dreams.
“Don’t rely on anyone to do anything for you in sport. You have to go out and get it for yourself. No matter how good or bad your training has been, every match starts at 0-0,” said Redman.
The last presentation of the night was delivered by both Frey and Seip honouring Roberts for her outstanding commitment to the schools athletic program.
Roberts will be retiring from EDSS after working at the school for 20 years.
“The success of the program would not have happened if it were not for (Roberts),” said Frey. “Every student who was a part of sports at EDSS over the years has been blessed to know her.”