PFFNHS athletics, academics celebrated at awards banquet
Tim Brody - Editor
Pelican Falls First Nations High School celebrated the athletic and academic accomplishments of its students over the past school year at an awards banquet on April 26.
Guest speaker Dallas Soonias, the first Indigenous man in Canada to play for Canada’s men’s national volleyball team, spoke with students about overcoming obstacles (in his case injuries) to achieve their goals.
“Expect struggle. Struggle is going to come and if you expect it, and you know it’s coming, then you can be prepared when it hits. So whether you’re like me and your body gets destroyed over the course of your professional career, or you go to university and it’s not exactly what you thought it was going to be, accept that you can get around that to reach your goal,” he told students.
Joanna Quequish, who received three academic awards during the evening, was especially proud of her cooking award.
Quequish said she has cooked all her life, adding it is a passion of hers, a passion she plans to follow.
“As soon as I graduate high school I plan to go to college to study culinary management and hopefully open my own restaurant,” she said. “It’s fun. I get to be creative in different ways,” she added.
Checotah Powless, who was named Senior Male Athlete of the Year shared, “I just really tried to get a lot of work in at the gym and do my best every day.”
“I just love playing sports,” he added. “I just tried to push the guys, keep them going.”
Basketball has been his favourite sport at PFFNHS and he was named MVP of the senior boys basketball team.
“I’m graduating. I’m going to Niagara College and I’m hoping to play basketball for them,” he said.
Philip Howe, who won five academic awards, and one athletic award, said he is driven to be the best he can be.
He had this advice for his fellow students, “I know leaving home is hard, but you have to do it, work hard, do it for your education.”
Also during the evening, the JR. Boys Volleyball team was recognized for earning NorWOSSA silver, while three athletes (Philip Howe, Alyssa McKinney, and Angelia Kwandibens) were recognized for winning NWOSSA wrestling bronze, and two (Maximus Meekis and Anawdon Keeash) were recognized for attaining NWOSSA wrestling silver.
Pelican Falls First Nations High School 2018-2019 Academic Awards
CO-OP Award: Brandon Childforever
Guidance Award: Kelvin Gray
Social Science & Humanities Award: Philip Howe
Jr. Business Studies Award: Jules Meekis-Anagash
Jr. Canadian & World Studies Award: Naylene Spade
Sr. Canadian & World Studies Award: Darnell Jeremiah
Jr. English Award: Zora Anishanbie
Sr. English Award: Paula Rae
Jr. Mathematics Award: Karma Barkman
Sr. Mathematics Award: Lee Kakegamic
Jr. Science Award: Lucius Kakekayash
Jr. Technology Award: Jocelyn Meekis
Sr. Technology Award: Cree Sutherland
Jr. Native Studies Award: Michaela Peters
Sr. Native Studies Award: Dawson Ostamus
Ojibway Native Language Award: Philip Howe
Ojicree Native Language Award: Kristen Kakekagamic
Traditional Technology Award: Brandon Childforever
Male Cultural Award: Ralph Winter
Female Cultural Award: Charity McKay
Male Literacy Award: Philip Howe
Female Literacy Award: Kishiah Oombash
Jr. Arts Award: Camden Whiskeyjack
Sr. Arts Award: Paula Rae
Music Award: Taneisha Meekis
Cosmetology Award: April Tait
Student Ambassador Award: Eleanor Beardy
“Humanity” Award: Joanna Quequish
Yearbook Award: Joanna Quequish
Student Council Award: Cornell Meekis
Cooking Award: Joanna Quequish
Male Turn Around Award: Kelvin Grey
Female Turn Around Award: Reanna Owen
Male Attendance Award: Philip Howe
Female Attendance Award: Star McKay
Jr. Male Congeniality Award: Lucius Kakekayash
Sr. Male Congeniality Award: Cornell Meekis
Jr. Female Congeniality Award: Summer Spade
Sr. Female Congeniality Award: Jada Meekis
Male Healthy Active Living Award: Philip Howe
Female Healthy Active Living Award: Leera Beardy
Pelican Falls First Nations High School 2018-2019 Athletic Awards
Golf - Most Improved: Lucius Kakekayash, Coach’s Award: Robin Meekis, Most Valuable: Benjamin Morriseau
Cross Country Running - Most Improved: Lucius Kakekayash, Coach’s Award: Jules Meekis-Anagash, Most Valuable: Justice Bland
Baseball - Most Improved: Morningstar Sakakeesic, Coach’s Award: Anawdon Keeash, Most Valuable: Martha Wesley
Broomball – Most Improved: Marcus “Laine” Owen, Coach’s Award: Keenan Kwandibens, Most Valuable: Charity McKay
JR. Boys Volleyball – Most Promising Rookie: Brayden Suggashie, Coach’s Award: Christian Suggashie, Most Valuable: Jordan Mekanak
SR. Boys Volleyball – Most Improved: Tyson “Loonie” Wesley-Loon, Coach’s Award: Joesph Rae, Most Valuable: Maximus Meekis
JR. Girls Basketball – Most Promising Rookie: Kiara Kakepetum, Sportsmanship: Jocelyn Meekis, Most Valuable: Alyssa Kakegamic
SR. Girls Basketball – Sportsmanship: Penelope Roundhead, Coach’s Award: Flora Kwandibens, Most Valuable: Tamara Kaminawaish Loon
Wrestling – Most Improved: Philip Samuel Howe, Coach’s Award: Alyssa McKinney, Most Valuable: Anawdon Keeash
Ice Hockey – Most Promising Rookie: Brayden Suggashie, Coach’s Award: Checotah Powless, Sportsmanship: Morningstar Sakakeesic
SR. Girls Volleyball – Sportsmanship: Leah Fiddler-Duncan, Coach’s Award: Charity McKay, Most Valuable: Anawdon Keeash
JR. Girls Volleyball – Sportsmanship: Summer Spade, Most Promising Rookie: Latoria Owen, Most Valuable: Alyssa Kakegamic
JR. Boys Basketball – Most Improved: Lee Kakegamic, Coach’s Award: Lidstrom Skunk, Most Valuable: Benjamin Morriseau
SR. Boys Basketball – Most Promising Rookie: Anton Meekis, Coach’s Award: Kelvin Gray, Most Valuable: Checotah Powless
Badminton – Most Improved: Cleopatra Fiddler, Coach’s Award: Eleanor Beardy, Most Valuable: Reanna Owen
Futsal Boys – Coach’s Award: Lucius Kakekayash, Most Valuable: Marquell Kaminawaish,
Futsal Girls - Coach’s Award: Shinae Loon, Most Valuable: Tamara Kaminawaish Loon
10 Years of Coaching: Mr. Shawn Hordy
JR. Male Athlete of the Year: Jordan Mekanak
SR. Male Athlete of the Year: Checotah Powless
JR. Female Athlete of the Year: Alyssa Kakegamic
SR. Female Athlete of the Year: Tamara Kaminawaish Loon