2015 Athlete of the Month Awards

DECEMBER
Keegan Christ

Keegan Christ of Regina is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. December Athlete of the Month Award. He was nominated by the Saskatchewan Amateur Speed Skating Association.

Christ won a gold medal in the 1,000 metres at the Single Distance Series #4 Speed Skating Competition in Calgary. He broke his own provincial record by skating a time of one minute 23 seconds. Christ enjoyed a successful 2015, which included him earning a chance to qualify for the Canadian Senior Short Track Championships.

NOVEMBER
William Dutton

William Dutton of Humboldt is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. November Athlete of the Month Award. He was nominated by the Saskatchewan Amateur Speed Skating Association.

Dutton had the most successful month of his career. He placed second among 79 international participants in the 500 metre division at the Long Track Time Trials in Calgary on Nov. 7, qualifying him for International Skating Union (ISU) World Cup competition. At the first ISU event from Nov. 13-15, Dutton placed second in the 500m and seventh in the 1,000m. At the second ISU event from Nov. 20-22, Dutton again placed second in the 500m.

The other outstanding nominee for this month was:

  • Melfort Curling Team, Special Olympics - won the Special Olympics Curling Bonspiel in Regina and earned the right to represent Saskatchewan at the National Championships in 2016.

OCTOBER
Shannon Comerford

Shannon Comerford of Saskatoon is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. October Athlete of the Month Award. She was nominated by the Saskatchewan Fencing Association.

Comerford placed seventh in the Senior Women's Foil Division at the Senior World Cup in Mexico on Oct. 13. There were 59 international competitors in her division. Comerford is a member of the Senior Women's National Foil Team.

The other outstanding nominee for this month was:

  • Kali Christ, Regina, Speed Skating - finished first in the 1,500 metre and fifth in the 1,000m at the Fall World Cup Selections in Calgary. As a result of achieving the fastest time in Canada in the 1,500m, she qualified for the World Cup Circuit for the Canadian National Team.

SEPTEMBER
Harriette Pituley

Harriette Pituley of Regina is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. September Athlete of the Month Award. She was nominated by Bowls Saskatchewan.

She won a gold medal at the 2015 Canadian Singles Lawn Bowling Championships on Sept. 5-10 in Winnipeg. Thanks to the victory, Pituley earned the opportunity to represent Canada at the 2016 World Champion of Champions Tournament in Queensland, Australia.

Pituley will also be competing with Team Canada at the 2015 Asia Pacific Championships on Nov. 23 - Dec. 6 in Christchurch, New Zealand. Team Canada is comprised of five men and five women from across the country.

AUGUST
Brianne Theisen-Eaton

Brianne Theisen-Eaton of Humboldt is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. August Athlete of the Month Award. She was nominated by Saskatchewan Athletics.

Brianne was heavily favoured coming into the Heptathlon discipline at the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships and she did not disappoint, winning the silver medal with a score of 6,554 points. The breakdown of her score was: 100 metre hurdles - 12.98 seconds (personal best); high jump - 1.80m; shot put - 13.70m; 200m - 23.94 seconds; long jump - 6.55m; javelin -42.94m and 800m - 2:11.52.

The other outstanding nominees for this month were:

  • Jessica Frotten, Regina, Wheelchair Athletics - won two bronze medals at the Para Pan Am Games. She finished third in the T53 100m event and T53 400m (setting a personal best time), and placed fourth in the T53 800m;
  • Brian Palaschuk, Regina, Swimming - set a provincial record and won gold in the 17 and 18 Male 200m freestyle event and also placed 4th in the 17 and 18 Male 400m freestyle at the Canadian Age Group Championships. Also won gold (400m individual medley), silver (400m freestyle), bronze (200m freestyle and all 5 of his team relay races) medals at the Western Canada Summer Games;
  • Lexy Vincent, Regina, Canoe Kayak - won six gold, one silver and one bronze medal at the Western Canada Summer Games while serving as Saskatchewan's flag bearer for the opening ceremonies. Won two bronze medals at the Canoe Kayak Canada National Championships;
  • Grant Wilkie, Saskatoon Lawn Bowling - placed first at the Canadian U25 Lawn Bowls Championship and qualified for the 2016 World Junior Championships. Won gold with Team Saskatchewan at the Canadian Lawn Bowls Championship, qualifying the team for the 2016 Tiger Bowls World Invitational;
  • Clara Allard, Prince Albert, Horseshoe - finished first in the Canadian Championships, pitching an average of 50.31 per cent over 15 games. Also finished first at the Fall Frolic and is the current Horseshoe Saskatchewan Ladies Champion;
  • Kendell Massier, Regina, Rowing - placed sixth in the Women's Quadruple Sculls at the World Junior Rowing Championships - the best-ever result for a Canadian. Also won gold at the Western Canada Summer Games and won two gold medals at the Annual North West International Rowing Association Championship Regatta.

JULY
Nikki Todd

Nikki Todd of Regina is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. July Athlete of the Month Award. She was nominated by Saskatchewan Squash.

At the Pan American games in Toronto, Todd teamed with Samantha Cornett of Ottawa to win the silver medal in women's doubles. She then joined with Cornett and Hollie Naughton to win the silver medal in women's team. Todd has been a member of Team Canada Squash for several years and developed through the Regina Junior Squash program and Saskatchewan Squash.

The other outstanding nominees for this month were:

  • Kelsey Jensen and Taylor Molde, Weyburn, Water Polo - Competing as part of the Canadian Women's Water Polo Team, the two won the silver medal at the (International University Sports Federation (FISU) Games in Gwanju, South Korea.
  • Taryn Suttie, Hanley, Athletics - Suttie began the month by capturing the gold medal in shot put at the Senior National Championships for Track and Field in Edmonton, and then placed tenth overall in shot put at the Pan American Games.
  • Tim Landeryou, Saskatoon, Racquetball - Landeryou was one of only two Saskatchewan athletes to win multiple medals at the Pan American Games - a bronze in men's doubles and another bronze in men's team competition.

JUNE
Becky Richter

Becky Richter of Saskatoon is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. June Athlete of the Month Award. She was nominated by the Saskatchewan Wheelchair Sports Association.

It was a record-breaking month for Richter. She broke a world record and two Canadian records at the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Athletics Grand Prix, where she captured four gold medals and two silver medals. It was the first time a world record had been broken at the event since 1989. Richter broke two more world records at the Daniella Jutzeler Memorial and earned two gold medals. She also broke two world records at the Swiss Open Nationals.

The other outstanding nominees for this month were:

  • Kendell Massier, Regina, Rowing - won a gold medal in the senior women's singles 2,000 metre event at both the Canadian Secondary Schools Rowing Association Championship and U19 National Team Selection Trials. Has been named to the Women's Quadruple Sculls boat to represent Canada at the World Junior Rowing Championships;
  • Kim Walker, Regina, Golf - finished first at the Saskatoon Women's Open Golf Championships, where there were more than 80 participants from Saskatchewan and Alberta. Earned her ninth Wascana Golf and Country Club "club championship" win.
  • Shawna Ryan, Saskatoon, Cycling - placed sixth in the road race at the World Road Cycling Championships. Qualified by winning a silver medal in the road race and individual time trials at the Canadian Road Cycling Nationals.

MAY
David Samayoa

David Samayoa of Regina is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. May Athlete of the Month Award. He was nominated by the Saskatchewan Weightlifting Association.

Samayoa will represent Canada at the Pan Am Games in July following his performance at the Canadian Weightlifting Championships, where he placed first, set two provincial records and achieved personal bests. He has won back-to-back national titles and is currently the fourth ranked overall weightlifter in Canada.

The other outstanding nominees for this month were:

  • Kelly Wiebe, Athletics, Swift Current - finished first in the Canadian 10,000 Metre Championships and broke the event/venue record. He also won a silver medal at the Canadian 10 Kilometre Championships and finished fourth at the Canadian Half Marathon Championships;
  • Team Sask U16 Boys Water Polo Team - earned the first-ever gold medal for Saskatchewan in the 16-and-under category at the National Water Polo Championships League Final 4. Earned the only Western spot in the National Final 4 competition. Jake Morris (most valuable player, top scorer), Brody McKnight (most valuable goalie) and Cyril Dorgigne (most valuable coach) all received awards;
  • Brandon Chow, Team Handball, Regina - placed fifth at the Canadian Junior Men's Nationals and was named an all-star, posting 38 total goals in the tournament. He also won a silver medal at the IHF Pan American Finals;
  • Shawna Ryan, Cycling, Saskatoon - won gold, silver and bronze medals in the para-cycling women's tandem division at the Defi Sportif in Quebec. Was invited to two World Cups based on her results;
  • Danielle Drury, Racquetball, Saskatoon - won two gold medals at the Canadian National Racquetball Championships, finishing first in women's doubles and mixed doubles.

APRIL
Tianna Kennett

Tianna Kennett of Manor is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. April Athlete of the Month Award. She was nominated by the Saskatchewan Amateur Wrestling Association.

Kennett won a gold medal and received the Outstanding Wrestler Award at the Wrestling Canada National Championships on April 11. She has now qualified to compete at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport Championships.

The other outstanding nominees for this month were:

  • Saskatchewan Women's Wheelchair Basketball Team, Saskatoon/Regina/Prince Albert - won the bronze medal (Saskatchewan's first medal ever) at the Canadian Wheelchair Basketball League Women's Nationals by defeating Quebec 70 to 49. The team had two wins and two losses in round-robin play.
  • Saskatchewan Junior Provincial Racquetball Team, Saskatchewan - placed second overall with a total of 10 medals (three gold, five silver, two bronze), with the second smallest contingent. Four out of five Saskatchewan athletes were named to the Junior National Team and will compete at the Junior World Championships in the fall.
  • Team Saskatchewan Male and Female National Aboriginal Hockey Teams, Saskatchewan, hockey - Saskatchewan's male and female teams won gold at the National Aboriginal Hockey Championships. The men edged Alberta 4-3 in overtime, while the women defeated Ontario 3-2. Women's goaltender Summer Roberts was named the tournament's most valuable player among goaltenders, while men's captain Curtis Roach was named most valuable defencemen.

MARCH
Samantha Ryan

Samantha Ryan of Saskatoon is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. March Athlete of the Month Award. She was nominated by Swim Saskatchewan Inc.

Ryan was named to both the 2015 International Paralympic Committee (IPC) World Championship team and 2015 Toronto Para Pan Am Games team thanks to a solid performance at the 2015 CanAm's, Para Pan Am Games and IPC World Championship Trials. Ryan won silver medals in the 100m butterfly and 200m individual medley, as well as a bronze medal in the 100m freestyle. In addition, she broke the Canadian record in the 100m butterfly event.

The other outstanding nominees for this month were:

  • Kaycee Schroeder, Saskatoon, triathlon - finished first in the Clermont Challenge Elite Development U25 Draft Legal Competition. Won her first race as a junior in an international competition and finished Top 10 at the North American Junior Championships;
  • Olivia Moyse, Moose Jaw, speed skating - was the MVP of Team Saskatchewan at the Canada West Short Track Championships, placing first in the 200m, 400m, 1,500m and 3,000m. Overall, she finished first among Age 14 Females;
  • Christine Richardson, Regina, racquetball - finished ninth at the 2015 Pan American Racquetball Championships. The competition consisted of 14 countries;
  • Leland Guillemin, Saskatoon, fencing - was named to the Senior Men's Epee squad to represent Canada at the Pan American Games following a first-place finish at the Canada Cup #2. Currently ranked second in Canada for Senior Men's Epee;
  • Lauren Taylor, Saskatoon, athletics - won a gold medal in women's high jump at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) University Championships. Produced a new team record and it was the top high jump performance of the entire CIS indoor season for women;
  • Roman Timmerman, Saskatoon, golf - placed first out of 55 participants in his age category at the Maple Leaf Junior Tour (MJT) International Players Championship. Had low medallist honours and was first in MJT Order of Merit points.

FEBRUARY
Brittany Hudak

Brittany Hudak of Prince Albert is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. February Athlete of the Month Award. She was nominated by the Saskatchewan Wheelchair Sports Association.

At the International Paralympic Committee World Cup, Hudak won two gold medals (1 kilometre classic and 15 km classic), two silvers (5 km classic, 5 km freestyle) and one bronze (1 km freestyle). She followed this performance by winning three gold medals at the Canada Winter Games. She finished first in the 1.2 km classic, 2.5 km classic and five km classic. At the Canada Games, Hudak became the first ever para-athlete to compete in the able-bodied 4 x 3.5 km relay. She passed three skiers to move the team from 10th to seventh place. She was also the flag bearer for Team Saskatchewan at the closing ceremonies.

The other outstanding nominees for this month were:

  • Lucas Morin, Saskatoon, speed skating - won a gold medal in the 1,500 metre at the Canada Games, also placing second in the 500m and third in the 5,000m and team pursuit. Had the top performance of all Team Saskatchewan speed skaters;
  • Bryce Martindale, Regina, judo - had a perfect 3-0 record and won gold at an inter-provincial meet in Manitoba. Won silver with a 2-1 record at the Canada Winter Games;
  • Alison Schlichemeyer, Saskatoon, racquetball - finished fifth at the National Team Selection Event #2;
  • Josh Bodnarchuk, Saskatoon, wrestling - won a gold medal at both the CIS Championships and Canada West Championships. Was named Rookie of the Year at both events;
  • Joey Phillips, Kerrobert, Special Olympics - won four gold medals at the Special Olympics Saskatchewan Provincial Winter Games (100m, 200m, 400m and 800m snowshoe);
  • Matthew Hudec, North Battleford, biathlon - was the fourth ranked Canadian at the International Biathlon Cup. Won Saskatchewan's first gold medal of the Canada Winter Games in the junior men's 10 km sprint race and won a silver in team pursuit.

JANUARY
Juliette Wheler

Juliette Wheler of Saskatoon is the recipient of the Sask Sport Inc. January Athlete of the Month Award. She was nominated by the Saskatchewan Amateur Speed Skating Association.

Wheler qualified for the Junior World LT Championships thanks to a strong performance at the Canadian Junior Championships. She placed first in both the 3000-metre and 1500m, while finishing third overall at the event. Wheler was also fifth in the 1000m and seventh in the 500m. She also competed at the Canadian Senior Championships. Her results were: fifth, 1500m; eighth, 3000m; 10th, 500m; and 12th, 1000m.

The other outstanding nominee for this month was a squad nominated by Racquetball Saskatchewan:

  • Tim Landeryou, Saskatoon, - earned a fourth-place finish at the National Team Selection Event #2
    Qualified to represent Canada at the Pan Am Championships
  • Alison Schlichemeyer, Saskatoon - finished fifth at the National Team Selection Event #2
  • Nathaniel Husulak, Saskatoon - placed sixth at the National Team Selection Event #2
  • Danielle Drury, Saskatoon - finished seventh in the National Team Selection Event #2
  • James Landeryou, Saskatoon - placed ninth at the National Team Selection Event #2