Saturday , 31 July 2021

Cold Lake Royals football banquet, Priestly named Nissan All-Canadian

The Cold Lake Royals put the finishing touches on their 2018 football season last Thursday at their banquet.

It was an opportunity to recognize the standouts from the season, and look back at the highlights.

The Royals finished 1-5 in Wheatland Football League play.

Three seniors will graduate this year: Hunter Nicholson, Dominic Ayers, Ayokunle Ajayi.

Cole Priestly named MVP

“It means a lot. I really look up to some of these guys. It means everything. I’m kind of mindblown about it…I don’t know what to say about it,” said Priestly after the banquet.

The Grade 11 student was honoured to win the award knowing who’s won it in the past.

“Last year we had a family. I think it’s pretty cool, because on the plaque it has two of my buddies up there, so now to have my name on that is pretty cool.”

Priestly had the honour of being named to the Nissan All-Canadian Titan all-star team in November. The panel which chose the team included CFL commissioner Randy Ambroise and CFL all-time receiving yards leader Geroy Simon.

“This is the first year they did the All-Canadian thing, and then I had to be nominated for that…we had to practice for a game 5 hour practice for everybody…We had team meetings, ate together, then we had a game – and it was cold.

“We played our game the day before the Grey Cup, and then we went to the festival, then walked in the grey cup parade, then watched the game.

“I don’t really know what to think about it. I thought it was a pretty incredible experience…there was amazing athletes, just absolutely incredible to be called just like them… it’s just spectacular,” said Priestly.

He wants to motivate his teammates to do more preparation for next season by going to the weight room.

“Not a lot of people go into the weight room, I think I’m going to encourage them to go in. I think this year was a building year…and we can really take it if everyone gets in the weight room and commits to the team.

“As much has it is a big year for the team, it is with me in my Grade 12 year trying to get scholarships and trying to go further with football,” said Priestly.

High School Winners:

Tumour balls – Dominic Ayers, Isaac Thiel, Jared Lewis, Aden Pelley, Logan Karenko.

Grade 9 Certificates – Jordan Fournier, Logan Karenko, Ethan Sawatzky, Brady Ballachay, Brandon Desjarlais.

Rookie of the Year – Ben Waters

Royals Pride – Shaun Minick, Alex Minick, Dominic Leduc, Jared Svoboda

WFL all star – Joe Hamel, Charlie Pearce

Senior Awards – Dominic Ayers, Ayokunle Ajayi

Commitment Award – Charlie Pearce

Dedication and Perseverance – Hunter Nicholson

MVP – Cole Priestly

Peewee Awards

The Cold Lake Rams awards kicked off the evening. The coaching staff, lead by Fred Paris, handed out the awards to the youngsters.

Here are the winners:

Rookie of the Year – Jaxon Daniels

Rams Pride Award – Kieren Yoshida, Kyle Rozendal

Heart and Hustle – Cash Turnell

Most Valuable Lineman – Lyle Farris

Most Valuable Defensive Player – Linkin Chemelli

Most Valuable Offensive Player – Nolan Boisvert

About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.