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Katelyn Andrea played basketball, volleyball, track, tennis and badminton this past school year.
The Grade 11 St. Ignatius student’s schedule was full of carpooling and after-school practices, but all that hard work paid off with some city titles, including her school’s win for basketball and volleyball.
Her basketball team also made it all the way to the provincial championships.
Andrea was one the city's top high school athletes recognized Monday at the Superior Secondary School Athletic Association’s awards luncheon at the Knights of Columbus Hall.
Top students in basketball, volleyball, soccer, wrestling, cycling, track and field and cross-country running were honoured at the luncheon.
While St. Ignatius lost their second game at the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Association championships, Andrea said competing at the provincial level motivates local athletes to perform better.
“The competition in Thunder Bay is good…every level you go up, it seems to get harder, obviously,” she said. “When little Thunder Bay goes to OFSAA and actually does decent, it’s a big deal and the whole city is behind us on that.”
Nick Kondrat also went to OFSAA this year, but for track and cross-country running.
The Grade 11 Hammarskjold High School student, recognized Monday for his achievements, placed 28th in cross-country and 17th in the 3,000 metre race.
“I didn’t have as good of a race as I was hoping, but it was a good experience nonetheless,” Kondrat said Monday before receiving a few awards at the SSSAA luncheon.
“A lot of people from southern Ontario haven’t really heard of all the Northern Ontario runners so it was good to make a name for Northern Ontario as a whole and my school and our region as well,” he said.
SSSAA activities director David Pineau said they had a great set of kids this year and they were happy to send them of with acknowledgement of their efforts from the past year.
“You need that plum at the end for the kids to strive for,” he said.
“I think we’re seeing our kids competing at a higher level.”
He attributes the rise in competition to the partnerships developed with other community sports groups that allow the students to train outside of the high school season.
But he also gave a lot of credit to the coaches, all of whom are volunteers.
“I think our coaches are getting stronger, wanting to see their teams and athletes to compete at a higher level,” he said.
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