Several hundred people were on hand for the fourth annual Rotary North Okanagan Athletic awards, honouring the best in high school sports.
The event was held at the Vernon Lodge Tuesday night.
Cross country runner Hannah Bennison and football’s Ben Hladik — both of VSS — were named athletes of the year.
“Not enough can be said about those two. Hannah is in the top 20 in the world, and Ben is the top football player in British Columbia. Those two were just exceptional, and in a different league I think,” says Rotarian and organizer Keith Johnston.
Photo: Ben Hladik (right) of VSS was named top male athlete. He has signed to play with the UBC Thunderbirds next season.
The top academic male was Jacob Molitwenik of Vernon Christian School, while Emanuella Oduro from Seaton won for the girls.
Teams of the year were senior boys football from VSS, and senior girls volleyball from Seaton.
Johnston says more than just athletics goes into who wins.
“Academics, leadership, involvement in the community, citizenship, what their teammates think of them. Those all play into who wins the awards,” says Johnston.
Joe Bateman, manager of the junior and senior VSS football teams, won the Patrick Nicol Kiss FM Award for his team spirit and dedication, spending countless hours doing all the thankless jobs needed for a successful program.
Mitch Goodwin from Pleasant Valley Secondary and Fane Triggs from Seaton were co-coaches of the year.
Ian Cameron of Pleasant Valley received the lifetime coach award.
Former NHL forward Aaron Volpatti was the guest speaker, after another former NHL’er Brent Gilchrist had to cancel last week.
The event was put on by four Rotary clubs: Armstrong, Silver Star, Kalamalka and Vernon.
Photo: Hannah Bennison of VSS was named top female athlete. She will attend Providence University this fall.
Photo: Former NHL’er Aaron Volpatti was the guest speaker
Here is the list of winners from 4th annual Rotary North Okanagan Athletic Awards on June 13,2017 at Vernon Lodge
Volleyball: Rebecca VanderDeen Vernon Christian School
Cross country running Hannah Bennison VSS
Basketball: Brianna Falk VSS
Newcomer of year: Kelsey Falk VSS
Soccer: Madison Catt Fulton
Track and Field: Trinity Hansma PVSS
Tennis: Jenna Ringtaube and Bernice Leonhardt Kal
Teammate of year: Taylor Sexsmith CBSS
Football: Ben Hladik VSS
Volleyball: Landon Currie Fulton
Basketball: Nathan Banga Fulton
Soccer: Jared Quibell Seaton
Golf: Braeden Cooper VSS
Teammate: Landon Currie Fulton
Newcomer: Landen Harison Seaton
Rugby Jeff Han Fulton
Track and field Jacob Molitwenik Vernon Christian School
Ian Cameron Lifetime coaching award
Coaches of year: Mitch Goodwin (PVSS) and Fane Triggs (Seaton)
Patrick Nicol Kiss FM award for team spirit Joe Bateman VSS
Male athlete of year: Ben Hladik VSS
Academic male of year: Jacob Molitwenik VCS
Female academic of year: Emanuella Oduro Seaton
Female athlete of year: Hannah Bennison VSS
Teams of year: senior boys football VSS
senior girls volleyball Seaton