HUMBOLDT, ANNAHEIM, WAKAW, QUILL LAKE, PUNNICHY, IMPERIAL — Eight individuals were recognized by the Horizon Central Athletic Association in 2022 for their outstanding contributions to school athletics programs.
The HCAA Recognition Awards are typically presented at the 2022 HCAA Spring Meeting, but this year, the meeting was held virtually.
Paul Strueby (St. Augustine School, Humboldt)
Paul Strueby began his teaching career in Naicam. In his four years there, he had many coaching successes in cross country running, volleyball, and track and field.
Paul made his way to St. Augustine School in Humboldt in 2013. Since being at St. Augustine School, Strueby has coached flag football, boys basketball, track and field, golf, and cross country running.
Strueby is also involved with the HCAA at the annual pre-district and district track and field meets as the head finish line co-ordinator and the announcer. He is also a member of the HCAA provincial relay teams committee.
Paul Strueby is a fantastic coach. He always has a well-thought out game plan for the school. He believes in teamwork and building strong relationships with staff members and students. His desire to make his school the best place for students is obvious in everything he does, and the students and staff are grateful for his contributions."
Outside of school, Paul is also the president of Humboldt Minor Baseball, sits on the East Central Baseball board, and scouts for the Humboldt Broncos.
Tiffany Cyr (Punnichy Community High School)
Tiffany Cyr is a parent-volunteer at Punnichy Community High School.
Throughout the last number of years, Tiffany has been instrumental in making it possible for the senior girls volleyball program to run. She has opened up her house after practices to give the players somewhere to go until they were able to get home. This also included opening up her home on weekends so athletes could be closer to the school for early morning departures to tournaments.
She has also driven to and chaperoned at several tournaments and overnight stays. She has helped to provide snacks, made breakfasts, and encouraged all of our players through her enthusiasm cheering on the sidelines.
Tiffany also greatly assisted the coach in recognizing, understanding, and solving issues that the players might have been having. She was a 'mom' to the whole team, and the school community is incredibly lucky to have her as a part of it.
Greg Harcourt (Quill Lake School)
Greg Harcourt has been an outstanding parent-volunteer at Quill Lake School. He is a dedicated volunteer coach and parent who promotes and supports athletics in the school and the community.
Greg is a very competent and qualified curling and volleyball coach. He has selflessly given much of his time and expertise to others in coaching senior girls volleyball and curling at the school.
Greg has instilled the love of curling in Quill Lake students. For many years, he could be seen with the “little rocks” developmental program, organizing the annual youth spiel on Family Day for grade 3 to adult age, and coaching the school’s junior and senior curling teams. His teams have had great success, including the 2019-20 SHSAA provincial bronze medal in senior mixed curling.
Greg’s involvement transcends the school as well. He has been an active member of his community, coaching and organizing minor ball and the Quill Lake ball tournaments. He is also on the sports grounds committee.
The school and community of Quill Lake most certainly understand how important Greg’s contributions have been and continue to be.
Carter Haryett (Wakaw School)
Carter Haryett has played an instrumental role in athletics in Wakaw School for the past 12 years. While he has helped coach various sports teams over the years, the football program has been the greatest beneficiary of his dedication.
Carter puts in hundreds of hours every school year to ensure that students have the opportunity to play football at various levels. He is heavily involved in the senior, junior, and pee wee football programs. He not only coaches, but does much of the behind the scenes organizing in regards to scheduling, transportation, organizing officials, and making sure the field is prepared for game day. Carter has also been the driving force behind the much-anticipated night game under the lights that has become an annual tradition in Wakaw. His dedication to the game and his players has not gone unnoticed as his teams are always one of the strongest six-man teams in the province culminating, with a provincial championship this past school year.
Carter also played a role in reviving the basketball program in Wakaw School. He has helped coach various levels of basketball over the last five years and can often be seen officiating games after school. In addition to the extra time Carter puts in with high school athletics, he is also an active member in the hockey community. He officiates dozens of games a year in Wakaw and has also helped organize referee clinics in Wakaw to help young officials learn and become certified.
Carter is a hard-working and dedicated coach and the students at Wakaw School have benefited greatly from his dedication to athletics and officiating.
Rhonda Kelly (Imperial School)
Rhonda Kelly has been a part of Imperial School and its athletic program for many years now. She has been an integral part of having sustainable programs such as cross country, junior and senior golf, junior volleyball, and junior basketball.
Rhonda Kelly’s willingness to coach is evident even when she does not feel incredibly comfortable coaching a particular sport. She offered her time to coach junior basketball and spent hours learning the game and offering her team an opportunity to play a sport they love. She endeavors to create opportunities for students to be part of something bigger than themselves. Rhonda definitely shows this by being actively involved in the yearbook and community functions.
Without Rhonda, there would be a huge void in the school and the community. Rhonda selflessly gives of her time, while still finding time to run with her busy, sports-minded family and to be a stellar teacher and LRT. She is so passionate about cross country that she went out of her way to host a challenging course at the local gravel pits. She has taken multiple golfers (her daughter included) to SHSAA Provincials where they finished well.
Rhonda is also an active member of the community and is the first to jump up and volunteer if there is a need for a coach to run a program. She is a willing coach, and teaching true life lessons in character development for all of her players has been a big priority in her coaching.
Rhonda’s easy-going and humble nature, along with her ability to motivate athletes to be their best, is admirable. She exhibits and instills sound character qualities into her students and athletes. Rhonda embodies that good things happen with patience and hard work. Student-athletes thrive in her programs as she applauds them for achieving their personal best.
Clayton Parobec (Humboldt Public School)
Clayton Parobec began his school athletics coaching in Horizon School Division in his internship at Humboldt Collegiate where he was instrumental in assisting with the junior and senior football teams. He also organized and ran a Junior Jamboree for the Grade 9 and 10 players.
In his first tenure at Humboldt Public School, Clayton coached track and field, flag football, junior boys volleyball, and junior badminton while also acting as the schools athletic director. He then departed to Three Lakes School in Middle Lake where he helped coach junior flag football, badminton, and senior boys volleyball in addition to his work as school principal. Clayton returned for his second tenure at Humboldt Public School as principal. At Humboldt Public, Clayton has coached several sports including flag football, cross country running, and track and field in addition to numerous coaching roles and opportunities around the community of Humboldt.
Clayton values the important role that athletics play in creating a positive school climate. He ensures that resources are available for students to participate and compete. He encourages and is appreciative of all help offered by his staff and community coaches. He also ensures that equipment for the athletics program is of a high standard.
Clayton is a role model for the students and a mentor to staff as a coach. He is regularly prepared for practices by running appropriate well thought out drills that he himself demonstrates. Clayton is highly encouraging in both practices and games, exuding passion for all aspects of interactions with students and fellow coaches. Fair play, teamwork, and sportsmanship are consistently modelled and observed in his coaching. Clayton’s complimentary rapport with the students of HPS on their achievements in their activities whether in or outside of school is another example of where his values lie.
Clayton Parobec is the embodiment of what it means to be an HPS Panther. He realizes and utilizes several avenues to promote Panther Athletics including social media, school announcements, and school celebrations. His involvement and impact on all of its programs is paramount in maintaining the athletics programs at HPS.
Nicole Unrau (Humboldt Collegiate Institute)
In her teaching career at Humboldt Collegiate, Nicole Unrau has demonstrated the importance of athletics through her steadfast commitment to the school's athletic programs.
Nicole has worked tirelessly to develop her athletes in cross country for the past five years. Nicole has also served as Humboldt Collegiate's head track coach for the past 9 seasons and has continued to grow the track program by providing top quality instruction, organization, and athlete development. She has also been instrumental in the operation of the pre-district track meets In Humboldt each year. Nicole also served as soccer coach the past school year.
Nicole Unrau has also played a valuable role in developing the athletics programming at HCI. She has been the co-athletic director for a number of years, ensuring HCI is able to offer strong extra-curricular offerings to the students, finding coaches, doing SHSAA registrations, and arranging the year end awards banquet.
Nicole is passionate, dedicated, and results-driven toward any involvement she undertakes in athletics. She walks the talk. She participates alongside her athletes, helping to motivate and educate them on up to date research and best practices to help enhance their athletic abilities. Nicole’s dedication and professionalism are second to none.
When Nicole isn’t busy with school based extra-curricular programming, she has also helped to run a private track club in Humboldt and runs the Hershey’s Track & Field program for elementary aged students each spring.
Blair Wourms (Annaheim School)
Blair Wourms has been teaching and coaching at Annaheim School for eight years. From the minute he entered Annaheim School as the physical education teacher, he has been 100% devoted to the athletics and well-being of the students in the school.
During his time at Annaheim School, Blair Wourms has been involved as a coach in many sports, including volleyball, soccer, basketball, badminton, and track, and typically all in the same year, each year. Even if he is not coaching a group, he is willing to help them out in any way that he can. He truly wants the teams to thrive, so he puts in the time to help build programs that will make the students, school, and community proud.
Blair does everything that he can to provide opportunities for students, and this goes beyond the hundreds of hours required for him to provide students with games and practices. He has organized SHSAA Provincial Championships in senior boys volleyball. He has organized senior co-op programs with other schools to help ensure that students will have a team and can participate in different sports, and will have sports programs well into the future. He assists in coaching these teams as well.
Blair’s dedication to athletics for students has led to him helping groups of students win eight provincial medals in volleyball, basketball, badminton, and soccer, three of which were won this past school year. Much of this student success can be attributed to the opportunities that he is all too happy to provide.
It is obvious to all that Blair wants all students to succeed and become the best players and people they can be. He holds players to high standards athletically, academically, and personally, and he models these standards in all of his interactions with them. He not only encourages students, but coaches them through tough times on the court and in their personal lives as well. Students and players are lucky to have someone like Blair Wourms in their corner.