By Justin Seward
While Eagle Butte High School could not host an in-person banquet to recognize its athletes’ achievements this year, the school was able to hand out awards through social media on June 3.
The Male Athlete of the Year award was shared between William Baird, Gavin Derkson, and Aiden Heller.
Baird was the first six-sport athlete in the school’s history. He raked in the volleyball MVP, competed provincially in cross-country and also participated in badminton, rugby, baseball and track and field.
“I’m honoured they chose me out of so many great athletes at our school,” said Baird.
“It’s a very proud achievement I’ve gotten and happy to be recognized for all my hard work and training over the years. It was really special to be awarded this with my two best friends, Aidan and Gavin.”
Baird chose to participate in the six sports because it’s a passion of his and he loves to compete.
“Every time I put on that Talon jersey, it’s just something special to play for the school,” said Baird.
Baird said playing six sports has “absolutely” made him a better person overall.
“I made so many friendships over the years and I had the opportunity to watch not only myself but all my other teammates, especially the Grade 12s over the last three years, grow and become great men that they are today,” he said.
His favourite memories of being a Talon were competing provincially in cross-country and bonding with his teammates at volleyball tournaments.
Montana Wright, who will be playing for the Medicine Hat College Rattlers women’s volleyball team next year, won the Female Athlete of the Year award, and shared the Dave Rozdeba AAA award with Azlin Ferguson.
“For the Dave Rozdeba award, I never got the honour of meeting him. I understand what an outstanding individual he was. I’m really proud to receive the award that he stood for (athletics, academics and attitude),” said the volleyball stalwart.
“For the athlete of the year, I’m really proud that my accomplishments have paid off and my hard work in various different sports has allowed me to receive this award.”
Her favourite memory of being Talon is making back-to-back trips to volleyball provincials in Grades 10 and 11, and winning a bronze medal at provincials in track and field.
She also achieved an academic average in the mid-90s in her classes.
The following are the 2020 MVP and Talon Pride awards for each team:
Senior Boys Basketball: Walker Long and Ethan Campbell (MVP), Eric Mason (Talon Pride)
Senior Girls Basketball: Kassidy Simmons (MVP), Abbi Stroh (Talon Pride)
JV Boys Basketball: Cayden Kidd (MVP), Matthew Bradbury and Miguel Rachao (Talon Pride)
JV Girls Basketball: Sarah Pimblett (MVP), Kailey Duchscherer (Talon Pride)
Senior Boys Volleyball: William Baird (MVP), Aiden Heller (Talon Pride)
Senior Girls Volleyball: Montana Wright and Tori Lunseth (MVP), Krista McKnight (Talon Pride)
JV Boys Volleyball: Rylan Jackson (MVP), Reiker Leipert (Talon Pride)
JV Girls Volleyball: Raquel Waldbauer (MVP), Georgia Heisler (Talon Pride)
Golf: Brady DeBoice (MVP)
Curling: Emma Herselman (MVP)
Cross Country: Azlin Ferguson, Gavin Derkson, Sheridym Herman, Kaden Rath, Kailey Duchscherer, Colton Robinson (Most Outstanding Athletes), Daphne Thompson, Mackenzie Duchscherer, Eric Mason, JJ Igarta (Talon Pride)