The 36th annual Yarmouth County Athletic Awards Banquet was held on Friday, Nov. 16, where the achievements of local athletes, teams, coaches, volunteers and groups were recognized. The banquet is organized by the Yarmouth and Argyle recreation departments.
To be eligible for an award, the nominees must be a Yarmouth County athlete, volunteer, official, coach, or be part of a team that has attained a provincial title in a sport or has distinguished themselves at the university, college, Atlantic, or national level.
In addition to the various awards handed out, six special awards were also handed out in the following categories, to the following individuals:
• Youth Athlete of the Year: Brett Mercier
• Athlete of the Year: Carol d'Entremont
• Fair Play Award: Michelle MacKenzie
• Coach of the Year: Rob Sweeney
• Official of the Year: Eddie Hartley
• Sport Volunteer of the Year: Comité organisateur de la 33e Finale des Jeux de l’Acadie 2012 -Executive Committee: Members of the executive committee were Neil LeBlanc, Yvonne d'Entremont, Ricky Muise and Marcel Cottreau
The following are the biographies of the special award winners, followed by a list of all award recipients honoured at the banquet.
2012 Yarmouth County Official of the Year
Sponsored by the Town of Yarmouth
Eddie Hartley has been involved in basketball officiating for the last eight years. He is very dedicated to learning more about the refereeing aspect of the game. He coached high school girls’ basketball at Drumlin Heights for eight years and was also involved in the Minor Basketball program in Shelburne for three years, running the program for one of those years.
Hartley has officiated at a higher level for the last 4 years being selected to officiate at the NSSAF High School provincial Championships for the last five years and has been chosen by his evaluator as the official to referee the Championship game three times.
Having been in the Elite Development Program for officials in the last three years, Eddie has been identified by the provincial organization (NSBO) as an official worthy of progression to the next level of certification.
2012 Yarmouth County Youth Athlete of the Year
Sponsored by Tim Horton's
Brett Mercier was a member of the Yarmouth Peewee AA Gateways that won the Atlantic championship this September in Tignish, PEI.
He was an offensive leader all season with an overall batting average of .541 and an on-base percentage of over .600. He had five homeruns, four triples, 11 doubles, 38 RBIs and scored 41 runs in 28 games. In the Bluenose league he hit .500 with 20 RBIs and 24 runs scored in 16 games. In districts he hit .556 and in Provincials he hit over.688 with 11 hits in 16 at-bats. He also hit a walk-off two run homerun in the championship to win provincials and advance the Yarmouth Peewee AA Gateways to the Atlantics. In Atlantics, Mercier continued his torrid pace with a .500 batting average and setting the tone early in the first game with a grand slam homerun. He also scored six runs and had six RBIs in the four games in the Atlantic Tournament.
Mercier is not only an excellent batter, he is an effective pitcher. He was one of the team’s main pitchers all season. He pitched and won the final game of the Bluenose League Finals. He also pitched a no-hitter in the quarter-final game in the provincials. In Atlantics he was the winning pitcher in the first game and pitched an excellent game in the final game of the round robin play that his team won 6-5 in extra innings capturing the Atlantic championship.
When Mercier was not pitching, he was one of the team’s main catchers and also played shortstop or second base. As you can see, he played a very important role on the field in positions that require a good understanding of the game. But he also played an important role with the team as a leader, always making sure that guys were having fun and always ensuring that everyone knew what was happening on the field.
Mercier was also named Tournament MVP of the Atlantic Championship, and he also won “player of the game” in game #1. In provincials, he won a “Game MVP” award and placed third in the accuracy throwing skills contest.
Mercier also plays competitive hockey in the Yarmouth Minor Hockey Association. Last year he played for the Yarmouth Peewee AAA mariners and this year is playing for the Bantam AA Mariners.
2012 Yarmouth County Sport Volunteer Award
Sponsored by Tusket Sales & Service
Comité organisateur de la 33e Finale des Jeux de l’Acadie 2012
In October 2009, the Municipality of Argyle was awarded the 33e Finale des Jeux de l’Acadie from June 29 to July 3. This cultural and sporting event, which gathers almost 1100 young athletes from the Atlantic Provinces, would be held in Nova Scotia for only the second time in its 33-year history and the first time ever in a rural municipality.
By this time, the organizing committee (COFJA 2012) had already begun the task of organizing one of the biggest gatherings of Acadian/Francophone youth in Canada. By 2011, all 70 subcommittees responsible for every aspect of the event had a leader and volunteer recruitment was well under way.
In the end, a team of almost 900 volunteers transformed the hundreds of hours of preparation by the organizing committee into a successful and memorable event for the participants, the visitors and the community.
The executive committee included: Ricky Muise, Yvonne d'Entremont, Neil LeBlanc and Marcel Cottreau.
2012 Yarmouth County Fair Play Award
Sponsored by the Municipality of the District of District of Argyle
Michelle MacKenzie has been selected as the 2012 Fair Play Award recipient. She is the main organizer and coach for MacKenzie School of Dance. Her dancers perform and compete regularly both locally and internationally. When training for such events, her first priority is to make sure the dancers are as prepared as they possibly can be, both mentally and physically. This means teaching in a way that the dancers know that the most important thing is to try their best, and any awards that may come out of extra effort are a bonus. Team spirit and kindness to fellow dancers is also the motto of the dance school.
Dancers are also guided to respect one another, both as teammates and in competition. At their year-end recital, several awards are presented, with the biggest one being the Raymond MacKenzie Memorial Award. This award is dedicated to MacKenzie's father, who was the epitome of Fair Play. The dancer that receives this annual award must have many qualities that Raymond MacKenzie had, including: Encouraging others, kindness, respect, dedication, good attitude, hard work, helping others and never expecting anything in return.
2012 Yarmouth County Coach of the Year
Sponsored by the Municipality of the District of Yarmouth
Rob Sweeney has been awarded Dojo Sensei of the Year by the Nova Scotia Karate Organization for 2012. This award was given to him by the Provincial Karate Organization for his teaching of karate to kids in the local area of Yarmouth and Argyle. Sweeney started training in karate in 1984 at Amirault’s Hill school, under Sensei Milton Bourque. He switched Karate styles in 1991 and received his black belt in 1996. He is currently a second-degree black belt in Shotokan Karate studying for his 3rd degree. The Shoto Ryu Jutsu Karate Dojo is currently affiliated with the Tsurouka Karate Organization. Sweeney has his level 1 coaching course NCCP which has greatly helped in his teaching younger karate students. Sweeney has also utilized his knowledge and skill in the art of karate by teaching new and older students to become active in sports competitions and has made it enjoyable to learn the art of karate.
2012 Yarmouth County Athlete of the Year
Sponsored by Tim Horton’s
Carol d’Entremont doesn’t remember a time when sports weren’t a part of her life. In junior high and senior high she played basketball and softball. It wasn’t until she was an adult that she tried Badminton and then tennis. She loved playing both sports and soon began to compete in tournaments. Over the past 15 years, she has had success on a provincial and Atlantic level but 2012 has been an exceptional year. It started in March with Badminton by winning both Provincial and Atlantic Open Ladies Doubles with her partner Aine Humble.
Tennis also went well for her in the summer of 2012. She was a finalist in 45 Singles at the Nova Scotia Open Tennis Championships and also a finalist at the Atlantic Master’s Championships in Halifax.
Another highlight of the summer was winning both 45 Singles and Mixed Doubles at the Atlantic Grass Court Tournament in PEI. So far she has restricted her travelling to the Atlantic Provinces but hopes to play her first National Tennis Tournament in Vancouver next August.
SEE A LIST OF ALL RECIPIENTS ON THE NEXT PAGE