Region Well Represented At NAIG

Noble Jacobs - NAIG

Noble Jacobs carrying the Walpole Island flag at the NAIG opening ceremonies in Regina, Saskatchewan – Contributed Photo

The 2014 North American Indigenous Games are underway in Regina, Saskatchewan, running from July 20-27, with a large group of local athletes representing Walpole Island, Moraviantown, and surrounding communities.

Wallaceburg Lacrosse has several athletes representing Team Ontario and Walpole Island at the Games, headlined by Wallaceburg Red Devils goalie Noble Jacobs, who will backstop the Ontario U19 Lacrosse team. He’s joined by Colton Hart of the Wallaceburg Intermediate team.

For athletes such as Jacobs, who was named an assistant captain of Team Ontario, the opportunity to represent the area at the NAIG’s is meaningful.

“The feeling to represent my people and my province at this years NAIG’s is incredible,” said Jacobs. “You feel the pride in yourself and your accomplishments up to this point and you realize that you can only accomplish more.”

Jacobs also believes the opportunity for all young athletes to participate in such a large scale event is one they’ll cherish.

“Young athletes at these games gain so much experience from an event like this, they get to understand who they are as an indigenous person and they start to have pride in who they are as a person as an athlete also,” continued Jacobs.

“All of us here are making friends from all across North America though competition as well as social events.”

On the U16 lacrosse team are a trio of Wallaceburg Lacrosse products, including Preston Whiteye, Kaid Hart, and Wade Riley. The U16 lacrosse players already won a silver medal on day two of the competition, losing to New York in the final.

In basketball, Kayla Riley, a Kent high school all-star with Wallaceburg District Secondary School, will play for Ontario’s U19 girls basketball team, while youngsters Legacie Blackbird and Keahna Riley are on the U16 team.

UCC Lancers multi-sport athlete Floritia Avina, will participate in athletics, after qualifying in multiple events, including the javelin, an event she’s excelled at in high school and regional competitions. Trenton Hopkins will also compete in athletics on the male side.

The Ontario baseball team will be well represented by Walpole Island athletes, as Bronson Bea, Jalen Fisher, Falcon Jacobs, Hunter Shipman, Drew Fisher and coach Lee Jacobs are all in Saskatchewan. In softball, Ridgetown’s Cynthia Hopkins and Karleigh Hopkins will play for Ontario U19 squad.

Wallaceburg Tartans swimmer Chelsey Johnson, who competed at OFSAA this year, and was WDSS’ Walpole Island Female Athlete of the Year, will compete in swimming at the NAIG’s.

In canoeing, Troy Nahdee, Brent Blackbird, and Lilly Kicknosway will compete, while the Ontario golf team will be lead by manager Steve Tooshkenig, and coached by Cheryl Tooshkenig-Mitchell (girls) and Dale Johnson (boys).

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