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Westisle announces athletes of the year

Lyndsay Callaghan and Chandler Gard, proudly display the Athlete of the Year awards they received during the Westisle Composite High School Sports awards dinner.
Lyndsay Callaghan and Chandler Gard, proudly display the Athlete of the Year awards they received during the Westisle Composite High School Sports awards dinner. - Eric McCarthy

Gard, Jelley pick up Heart of the Wolverine awards

ELMSDALE – It is Westisle Composite High School’s mascot, but what does one know about the wolverine?

Ask Chandler Gard. He knows plenty about the animal.
“I know they’re small and they’re feisty, and they will do whatever it takes. You corner them, they fight right back,” said the school’s 2017-18 male athlete of the year.
The female athlete of the year award went to Lyndsay Callaghan, who also picked up individual awards for most valuable player on her school’s cross-country team and most improved player in basketball. The 18-year-old daughter of Harris and Irma Callaghan of Miminegash, who will be off to St. Francis Xavier University in pursuit of a science degree next year, lists being part of two teams that won medals for the first time ever at the AAA level this year – girls’ basketball and rugby – as being key milestones in her senior year.
She was also part of her school’s soccer, track and field, hockey and badminton teams this year.

Heart of the Wolverine
Gard, who picked up awards for most valuable player in powerlifting and track and field, and rookie of the year for volleyball earlier in the annual Westisle’s annual sports awards dinner, capped off the evening by taking home the male athlete of the year award and being named co-winner of the Heart of the Wolverine award.
“That almost brought me to tears, that one there,” Gard said of the Heart of the Wolverine recognition. “To be told your motivation and that, you are the personification of what they look for in an athlete here at Westisle, that feels incredible.”
He likes the wolverine comparison.
“That’s the only way I know how to play,” he said. “Westisle has taught me well.”
Gard, the 17-year-old son of Jeff and Francine Gard of the Gard Road, plans to attend St. Thomas University in pursuit of an arts degree. He vowed to remain active in track and field, rugby and powerlifting.

Three-sport athlete
The co-winner of the Heart of the Wolverine Award with Gard is fellow graduating athlete Joselyn Jelley. A three-sport athlete since Grade 10, Jelley dropped basketball this year to focus more on powerlifting, and she continued to compete in rugby.
“I wanted to focus on powerlifting. I wanted to get better at that,” said Jelley. “I figured I’d be doing that longer. I wouldn’t be playing basketball when I finished high school, but I’ll be doing powerlifting.”
She was named her team’s most dedicated rugby player and won powerlifting awards for most valuable lifter and best pound-for-pound lifter. She said she is “very proud, very honoured” to receive the Heart of the Wolverine award.
Powerlifting coach George Kinch presented the Heart of the Wolverine Award, and he said Gard and Jelley truly represented what the award stands for: “Their dedication and quiet leadership and unrelenting drive towards their objective inspires all those around them.”
Cross-country coach John Toner presented the female athlete of the year award, and said Callaghan displays leadership in sports and in the classroom. “You want to be better and to keep improving,” he addressed the award recipient. “You’re a worker, you’re dedicated and you know how to work.”
He praised her for her empathy, for quietly making those around her feel valued and as athlete of the year, he added, “I think you are one for the ages.”
Athletic director Jackie Perry announced the winner of the male athlete of the year award, indicating coaches had nothing but amazing things to say about Gard.
“Positive energy, hard work, commitment to your sport, resilience, right mindset,” said Perry. “Those are key things that positively affect you, your teammates, your sport, your school and your community.”

Eric.mccarthy@journalpioneer.com

Awards
Westisle Composite High School athletic awards:
Cross-Country
Girls’ most valuable player (MVP) –
Lyndsay Callaghan.
Boys’ MVP – Dominic Arsenault.

Baseball
Boys
MVP –
Chase Gaudette.
Top batter – Matt Williams.
Golden Glove – Colin Gaudette.

Golf
Girls
MVP –
Gemma Shea.
Most improved player (MIP) – Madison McHugh.
Boys
MVP –
Morgan Brennan.
MIP – Lucas Gallant.

Soccer
Senior AAA Girls
Rookie of the year –
Hayden Chaisson.
MIP – Martina Gallant.
MVP – Hannah DesRoches, Janelle Perry.

Senior AAA Boys
Rookie of the year –
Chris Ramsay.
MIP – Hayden Porter.
MVP – Tristan Cahill.

Senior A Girls
MIP –
Keira MacKendrick.
MVP – Allison Gorrill.

Volleyball
Senior AAA Girls
MVP –
Anna Herget.
MIP – Amber Perry.
Rookie of the year – Justine Cormier.

Senior AAA Boys
MVP –
Luke Gamble.
MIP – Tanner Rochford.
Rookie of the year – Chandler Gard.

Basketball
Senior AAA Girls
MVP –
Gemma Shea.
MIP – Lyndsay Callaghan.
Best defensive player – Madison MacKinnon.
Best offensive player – Gemma Shea.
Rookie of the year – Hannah MacKinnon.

Senior A Girls
MIP –
Maggie Gard.
MVP – Hayden Chaisson.

Senior AA Boys
MVP –
Elon Wilkie.
MIP – Jonathan Smith.
Best defensive – Chris Ramsay.

Badminton
Boys
Top player –
Ethan Oliver.
Juvenile MVP – Lucas Gallant
MIP – Chase Gaudette.

Girls
Top player –
Gracyn Handrahan.
Juvenile MVP – Nikeda Sark.
MIP – Allison Harper.

Hockey
Boys’ MVP –
Jesse Gavin.
Girls’ MVP – Ashton Grigg.

Trak and Field
Senior MVPs –
Madelyn Aylward, Tori Hogan, Chandler Gard.
Juvenile MVPs – Courtney Hierlihy, Madeline Morrison, Dominic Arsenault.

Softball
Senior Girls
MVP –
Eryn Hustler.
MIPs – Jasmine Ellsworth, Chloe MacLeod.
Most dedicated players (MDP) – Emma Leard, Bailey Gaudet.
Rookies of the year – Ally Hustler, Drew Hackett.

Rugby
Senior AAA Girls
MIP –
Abby Hackett.
Most dedicated – Joselyn Jelley.
Most valuable forward – Mackenzie Thomas.
Most valuable back – Victoria Hogan.

Senior A Girls
Most valuable forward –
Emma Lee Lyon.
MIP – Nina Grebig.

Senior AAA Boys
Rookie of the year –
Colby MacWIlliams, Nick Handrahan.
MIP – Daniel Gavin.
Most valuable forward – Ben Harper.
Most valuable back – Sterling MacKendrick.

Powerlifting
Top pound-for-pound lifters –
Marcus Ferguson, Joselyn Jelley.
Most valuable lifters – Chandler Gard, Eryn Hustler, Joselyn Jelley.
MIP – Gemma Shea, Brendon Harper.
Best new lifters – Emma Lee Lyon, Dawson Richard.

Special Awards
Sportsmanship –
Sterling MacKendrick, Gemma Shea.
Courage and Determination – Brendon Harper.
Heart of the Wolverine – Chandler Gard, Joselyn Jelley.
Contribution to School Athletics – Tanner MacCollum.
Male Athlete of the Year – Chandler Gard.
Female Athlete of the Year – Lyndsay Callaghan.

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