Grande Prairie Sport Council

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Coach of the Year

CLAIRE RICHTER, X-COUNTRY SKI

Claire has been coaching for the Wapiti Nordic Ski Club for over 11 yrs. She has coached swimming and soccer with the Special Olympics and was a Jr coach with jackrabbits in Haines Junction, YT. She has been cross country skiing since a young age and raced from the age of 8.  She was a member of the Yukon Ski Team, raced for Red Deer College and Edmonton Nordic before moving to Grande Prairie. She’s been blessed with many people assisting her on her journey through sport and wishes to do the same for others.

2016 Accomplishments

  • Coach for team Alberta North (Cross Country ski) at the Arctic Winter Games, Greenland March 2016. Coach Claire Richter led this team to Silver and Bronze Medals as well as several standings within the top 6. (A 4th place, and three 5ths)
  • Coach Claire takes the Wapiti Nordic Cross Country Race team to 8 provincial races every year attended by anywhere from 150-300+ athletes. At these provincial races in the past 3 months alone, Wapiti athletes under her coaching have been awarded a total of 6 gold medals, 11 silver medals, 10 bronze medals as well as 23 fourth – six place standings.
  • Coach for Zone 8 (Peace Country) Alberta Winter Games. Medicine Hat 2016. Results included a gold medal for Cross Country skiing.

Developmental Coach of the Year

Rob Ostrom, Football 

Rob is a phenomenal coach that has shared his passion for football for the last 12 years at a Pee Wee, Bantam and High School level. He has been the Offensive line Coach/ Coordinator at St Joe’s for 9 years and helped win 3 Provincial Tier 2 medals and 3 Peace Bowl Championships in a row. He has developed a remarkable number of top notch lineman that have continued to make Provincial & National teams. Rob will be coaching for the 2nd time this year at the Senior Bowl showcasing the top Gr 12’s in Alberta.Rob supports athletes & inspires.

  • 2016 GPPFL Head Coach for Colts and Mentor Coach for Junior Coaches at PeeWee Level
  • 2016 Offensive Lineman Coach & Head Offensive Coordinator at St Joe’s Celtics Football
  • Selected Coach for the Senior Bowl 2016 coaching the Top Grade 12 players in Alberta
  • Coach responsible for Coaching 3 top athletes that made U18 Team Alberta 2016 that played in the Canada Cup
  • Coach of MPFL Peace Bowl 2016 Champions- 3rd Title win in a row
  • Offensive Lineman Coach/Offensive Coordinator for St Joe’s Celtics at ASAA Provincials for Tier 2- Silver Medalists
  • Coach of a U16 Team Alberta Lineman that played in the International Bowl in Texas.

Female Athlete of the Year

Kinley Link

Kinley Link is a grade 11 student at Sexsmith Secondary School. She began wrestling in grade 7 and has a true passion for the sport. She trains 4 to5 days a week and competes on weekends. Kinley’s goal in 2017 is to earn a spot to wrestle for Team Canada and to represent her country at Pan American and Worlds. Kinley’s future goals are to graduate with high honors and earn an academic scholarship as well as a wrestling scholarship and continue to University where she would like study Education or Sciences.

  • Canadian National Wrestling Championships – Cadet 56 kg – Gold – Calgary, AB April 2016
  • Team Canada Wrestling Trials – Achieved a spot on Team Canada – Cadet 56 kg – Calgary , AB April 2016
  • Team Canada – Pan American Cadet Wrestling Championships 56kg – Bronze – Lima, Peru –July 2016
  • Team Canada – July 2016 – Nominated by Team Canada to represent Canada at Worlds 56kg
  • Team Canada – Cadet World Wrestling Championships – 20th in World at 56 kg – Tbilisi, Georgia September 2016
  • Arctic Winter Games – 56 kg Champion in Freestyle and Inuit Wrestling. Nuuk, Greenland -March 2016
  • Rural Provincial Champion – 57 kg – February 2016 – Lethbridge, AB
  • Received Sportsmanship pin at Rurals. February 2016 – Lethbridge, AB
  • Acceptance into the NextGen Program – Program to develop athletes through Wrestling Canada and Coach Carol Huynh – September 2016
  • Takedown Distributors – Selected as Canadian Cadet Female Wrestler to receive their gear sponsorship for 2017 – Selected Dec 31 2016

Male Athlete of the Year

Tristan Simmonds

The strength, power and athleticism that Tristan brings to the court make him a dynamic and exciting player to watch. At 6’1 Tristan could be considered ‘undersized’, but his jumping ability and attacking power make him one of the strongest offensive threats in the league. The consistency with which Tristan has played this season is impressive and made him a true leader. Off the court Tristan sets a high standard of dedication to fitness and diet and his work ethic and determination sets an example for his teammates to follow.

  • Nomination as ACAC All-Conference player (*Pending)
  • Acceptance to UBCO Men’s Volleyball Program for 2017/18 season
  • ACAC Men’s Volleyball Kill Leader Semester 1 of play, top 5 semester 2.

Female Team of the Year

GPRC Wolves Women’s Soccer Team

The 2016 GPRC Womens soccer team started the year with the goal of going to Soccer Nationals in Montreal, with new head coach Chris Morgan. The team played every game with a driven, unstoppable commitment to their coach and team. Even an unexpected snow storm in Grande Prairie did not stop this team from playing. They finished their year 8 and 2 only falling to NAIT at Provincials. They finished second and achieved their goal of going to Soccer Nationals with a shoot-out win over Medicine Hat.

  • 2016 ACAC All Conference players, Kennedy Hall, Chelsey Fitzgerald, Brooklyn Roberts Nov Edmonton
  • 2016 ACAC Coach of the year Chris Morgan, November 2016 Edmonton
  • 2016 CCAA nominee Coach of the year CHris Morgan, November 2016 Edmonton
  • 2016 ACAC Provincial Silver (GPRC record), November 2016 Edmonton
  • 2016 CCAA Soccer Nationals 6th place, November 2016 Montreal PQ (GPRC record)
  • 2016 CCAA Fair Play Award, November 2016 Montreal PQ
  • ACAC 2016 league standings 8 wins, 2 losses
  • 2016 CCAA National Ranking of 7th place going into National competition.

Male Team of the Year

St. Joe’s Catholic High School Celtics Football Team

St Joe’s Celtics Football were considered to be on a rebuilding year with many key athletes moving on to higher level football as they were graduating With a phenomenal Head Coach, Trevor Prichard and his outstanding coaching staff, they put in the effort, worked hard to come together as a young team and rose to the challenges. They won the MPFL Peace Bowl Championship again this year, that is 3 years in a row. After their regular season, Celtics continued on to ASAA Tier 2 2016 Provincial Finals coming home with a Provincial silver medal.

  • MPFL Peace Bowl Championship 2016- 3rd title in a row * ASAA Tier 2 Provincial Silver
  • Medalists- 3rd Provincial medal in a row.

Junior Female Athlete of the Year

Catherine Minic

Catherine is an extremely dedicated athlete who combines her natural ability, hard work and a positive attitude to strive towards future success. In a break through year Catherine has represented the Piranhas Swim Club at the highest levels of competition for her age category. Going from a relative unknown Catherine now is a consistent age group competitor at any swim meet in Canada.

  • Provincial 11/12 Age Group 200m Butterfly Champion (July – Calgary)
  • Provincial 11/12 Age Group 200m Medley Champion (July – Calgary)
  • Canadian National Age Group 12 & under 200m IM finalist 6th place (July – Calgary)
  • Canadian National Age Group 12 & under 400m IM finalist 7th (July – Calgary)
  • Canadian National Age Group 12 & under 200m Butterfly finalist 4th place (July – Calgary)
  • Canadian National Age Group 12 & under 200m Freestyle finalist 4th place (July – Calgary)
  • Canadian National Age Group 12 & under 400m Freestyle finalist 8th place (July – Calgary)

Junior Athlete of the Year

Lynden Testawitch

Lynden Testawitch is the eldest of four siblings. Born and raised is Grande Prairie, Lynden has tried his hand at football and baseball but was coaxed into trying wrestling. In the years since he started wrestling, he has won virtually every wrestling tournament he has entered and is currently the 2016 Cadet Canadian National Champion. Lynden knows it takes hard work and he is dedicated and focused and has set his sights to qualify for the World Championships. His sisters and parents are his biggest fans!

  • Rural Provincial Champion – Lethbridge – Feb 2016
  • Provincial Champion – March 2016
  • Canadian Cadet National Champion – Calgary -April 2016
  • Ontario Matmen Classic – Champion Dec 2016 – Ontario
  • Bishop Ryan Invitational – Champion – Dec 2016 – Ontario
  • High School Athlete of the Year – Charles Spencer – June 2016

Outstanding Official

Jean Guillemette

Jean is a consistent and fair referee. He is very good with coaches, athletes and works well with other referees. Jean is always willing to talk and answer questions and clarify calls. He is confident, professional and an all around good person.

Refs most local volleyball Tournaments

  • ASAA 2A zones in Donnelly, AB
  • ASAA 3A provincials in Camrose, AB
  • Referee for other sports as well

Sport Builder

Marj McAusland

Marj McAusland is best known in the region for her involvement as a founder, builder, coach, mentor, trainer, official and manager for senior female hockey. She was the first ever commissioner with the Grande Prairie Minor Hockey Association, Coach and Asst. Coach of Zone 8 and Team Alberta North female hockey teams at Alberta Winter and Arctic Winter Games, as well as with various minor and senior hockey teams in the area. For a number of years she served as Grovedale Minor Hockey President, reffed hockey, and worked extensively with learn to skate programs in Grovedale and served as president of the Peace Country Female Hockey League. She was an area rep with the Female Council of Hockey Alberta and served as commissioner with the Alberta Major Midget Female Hockey League.

Unsung Hero

Rick Scott

For the past 27 years, Rick has been involved with a number of local sporting communities (Road Running, Track and Field, Soccer, XC Running, Triathlon, Wolves Athletics, etc.) as an organizer, coach, driver, and sports photographer. He has volunteered thousands of hours to local sporting groups over the years with little fanfare. Long time volunteer and coach for both soccer and xc running/Track and Field. Coach, driver, organizer, and especially, photographer for many years, Rick contributes behind the scenes with little fanfare.

  • ACAC Coach of the Year XC Running 2004; coached a number of Wolves athletes/teams to provincial and national medals.