Rylan Wiens of Pike Lake,   Alex Larson of Hepburn and Travis Pruim of Osler are among the outstanding athletes, coaches, officials, volunteers and teams named as finalists and recipients for the 2022 Saskatchewan Sport Awards.

Wiens is one of three finalists for the Saskatchewan Male Athlete of the year. In 2022, Wiens won two silver medals at the Commonwealth Games, a bronze at Worlds, and two gold medals at nationals, setting a 15-year-old Canadian record in the process.

Larson and Pruim are members of  the Saskatchewan indoor volleyball team that won a gold medal at the Canada Summer Games in 2022. This marked the first time a men’s volleyball team from Saskatchewan has placed first at the event since 1987. The team also won a gold medal at the Canada Cup.

The annual Sask Sport Awards program celebrates the success and dedication of those in the province’s amateur sport community through two categories – Excellence Awards and Recognition Awards.

The Excellence Awards celebrate outstanding event performances or a series of performances by a Saskatchewan athlete, coach or team within a given calendar year, while the Recognition Awards include the Volunteer and Coach Dedication Awards which honour individuals who have devoted their time and effort to the growth of sport in Saskatchewan.

Paralympic swimmer Nikita Ens and adaptive waterski world-record holder Nolan Barnes are recipients of the Inspire Through Sport awards, while long-serving biathlon coach Doug Sylvester and volleyball coach Tracy Hazen were handed the Coach Dedication awards. 

For work in broomball, football, wheelchair rugby and Special Olympics, Leslie Bilodeau, Michelle Duchene, Ryan Gaudet and Tony Caissie were honoured with Volunteer Dedication awards.

The 18 finalists across the six Excellence categories includes Olympians and Paralympians, as well as national and international medallists. They were selected from 66 nominees nominated by family, the amateur sport community and provincial sport organizations.

“Saskatchewan is home to many outstanding and devoted individuals and teams who go to great lengths to excel at all levels of competition in amateur sport,” said Michael Rogers, Sask Sport Board of Directors Chair.

“Last year featured remarkable performances and contributions and those achievements deserve to be recognized. Without many of these devoted individuals, sport couldn’t happen in communities across the province. These individuals and teams continue to show that sport is truly more than a game.”

The 2022 Saskatchewan Sport Awards will be celebrated gala on Thursday, Jan. 26 at 7 p.m. at TCU Place in Saskatoon. The gala will honour the eight Recognition Awards recipients, as well as announce the recipients of the six Excellence Awards and celebrate those named as finalists.

Tickets are available for purchase on the Sask Sport website.

The Saskatchewan Sport Awards will also be available for viewing live on Sask Sport’s YouTube and on SaskTel maxTV Local on Demand at a later date.