The Dauphin Clippers football team put together a great season and they ended it with their year-end banquet.

Award winners:

Most Improved from 2 seasons ago:  Joseph Lopez

Most Improved this season: Scott Gower

Most Outstanding Player - Defense:  Garrett Thompson

Most Outstanding Player - Defensive Line:  Damon Nepinak

Most Outstanding Player - Offense:  Matthew Zurba

Most Outstanding Player - Offensive Line:  Isaiah Beardy

Playoff Most Outstanding Player - Defense Kelton Amendt

Playoff Most Outstanding Player - Offense: Matthew Zurba

Rookie of the Year - Gr 9,10: Sully Fox

Best First-Year Player - Gr 11,12: Austen Semchyshyn

Wellborn Dedication Award: Mat Bray

Ron Ricketts Clipper Family Award: Susan Zurba

Norris Aitken Award: Matthew Zurba

Coaches Award: Alex Tomkins

Derrick Brucks spent the past 12 years as a real estate agent in Saskatoon. It was a career that he loved and he was very passionate about it. His wife had already been living in Dauphin which meant Brucks spent some time here in Dauphin over the past couple of years.

Now, Derrick will be here full-time as he has joined the most recent champions of the Manitoba Junior Hockey League. A passionate hockey fan himself, Derrick is the Dauphin Kings' new marketing director and business manager, a position he took over earlier this month.

Brucks said when the job came open, it was something he was very interested in and he's pleased to have been given the opportunity.

"The community has been fantastic, everyone has welcomed me with open arms," said Brucks. "It was a fantastic year for the team with them making the Centennial Cup and I'm happy to be a part of this organization."

Derrick played three seasons in the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League, two of which were with the Battlefords North Stars. In his final year with them in the 1993-94 campaign, Brucks dominated as he scored 33 times in 68 games and had 76 points. 

As the push to the 2022-23 season continues, Brucks says he's looking forward to taking things to the next level when it comes to game day entertainment and so much more.

"Bringing some unique ideas into the fold is something I plan on working on," said Brucks. "Providing a full game-day experience for our fans is important, we have such a good product on ice so it would be great to have a great product off the ice as well."

In other Kings news, the team held their annual general meeting and the team's revenue for the 2021-2022 season was $889,903. Their expenses for the year were $660,638. 

The Layne's Stars are one of the best fast-pitch teams in the province. Playing in various tournaments across Manitoba and even outside of the province, the team based out of Mallard often wins and if they don't, they're right near the top. 

A big piece of the team is Norman Lacquette -- who grew up in Mallard -- but made the move to Dauphin because the opportunity to play other sports was greater and now, you'll find him playing a variety of sports including hockey. 

While the fast-pitch season continues, Norman is feeling great about where his game is and the Manitoba Aboriginal Sports and Recreation Council have backed up his thoughts. The young man has been named the MASRC Athlete of the Month for May. 

"It's a pretty great feeling, especially being Indigenous," said Lacquette. "People have said bad stuff to me before because I'm Indigenous but I have always pushed thru and worked as hard as I can. I use the bad words as motivation."

It all started when he was just a young child when he would always follow his uncle's baseball team around and he was even a recruiter of sorts as he would tell other young kids to play the game. One of the things that makes Norman the happiest in life is when he's with his teammates whether that be at a game or even just a practice. 

Norman is a Layne Star and for the athlete of the month, it means everything to him. 

"It's a great honour, that's how I look at it," offered Lacquette. "My family expects the best out on the field and we play as hard as we can every single game. We all play with so much passion and since Layne passed away, we push it even more."

Gerald Lopez and an extremely dedicated crew of coaches and mentors are committed to making Dauphin and the Parkland a dominant force when it comes to rugby.

It all starts with grassroots and that dedication paired with some extremely talented athletes is certainly paying off. Recently, the Dauphin Clippers girls rugby team earned a provincial silver medal while the men won a provincial bronze medal. When it comes to club rugby, the season is well underway and what a run it has been so far for the Parkland U14 Pirates.

The team opened their season with a tournament late last month and they weren't to be stopped. They downed a team from Winnipeg twice, the Regina Howlers twice, Regina Minor Rugby twice, and Meadow Lake twice. 8-0 in their first tournament led to a full month of practice and those practices led to another dominating performance over the weekend in Regina.

They played Meadow Lake twice, Regina Howlers twice and the Regina Minor Rugby Association twice and once again, they were perfect. The Pirates went 6-0 and they are now 14-0 this season. It's been a remarkable run and Lopez is very proud of the team.

"I'm so happy for the kids, to be able to apply what we do in practice and have success in game action," said Lopez. "The most important thing is they're also having a ton of fun, so that's great to see."

Lopez says he has a great group and they continue to push themselves and they deserve everything that they have gotten so far this season. Next up for the group is the Manitoba/Saskatchewan regional tournament which takes place July 9 and 10 in Brandon. Team Manitoba coaches will be in attendance watching as three players are fighting for a spot on the U18 Team Manitoba, a team that'll represent the province in Kelowna against the best in the country. 

"It's extremely exciting for all of us, we're extremely excited about it," ended Lopez. "Just to be back on the field competing and playing the game we love, is special for all of us."

Cole Delamare was named most valuable player of the Dauphin Clippers hockey team as they held their year end banquet Monday night. 

He had 18 goals to go along with 26 assists and only one defenceman (Ryder Heaphy) had more points than him in the regular season. Delamare added to his trophy case as he was also named playoff mvp to go along with top defenceman and top scorer.

Most Improved Player - Jake Kuzmiak (Couldn't attend)

Players Choice - Landon Brown

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Top Defensive Player - Oliver Dandeneau

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Clippers Commitment - William Miner

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Coaches' Choice - Bradyn Paskaruk

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Rookie of the Year - Liam Chartrand

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Hardest Working Player - Austyn Roos

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Top Goaltender - Owen Chubka

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Top Forward - Logan Chapman

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The U17 Manitoba men's basketball team features the top age-eligible players in the province and it is set to be an extremely busy summer for the 15 players that made the team out of tryouts.

14 of the 15 on the roster are from Winnipeg and they play on some of the best high school teams in the province including the St. Pauls Crusaders and Fort Richmond Centurions.

The 15th player on the team is from nearly five hours away from Winnipeg so he will add plenty of kilometres to his car but for this experience, he is perfectly good with that. Mason Chartrand had never tried out for a provincial team in the past but standing in at 6'8", the Pine Creek native thought now was a perfect time. Tryouts were rigorous and Mason was tasked with going up against some elite talent. It's not often that a player from outside of Winnipeg makes the provincial team in basketball so going in, Mason wanted to change that stat and that's exactly what he did.

Mason already defied the odds when he paired up with Kamdyn McKay, Rylan Chartrand and Phillip Desmarais to win the Hoop It Up 3-on-3 national championships in Tempe, Arizona. While Mason was feeling confident heading into Team Manitoba tryouts, he knew it would be a great challenge to make the team and now that he has, he's thrilled.

"It felt so great for me, especially being the only player outside of Winnipeg," said Chartrand. "I'm looking forward to all the travelling and bonding with the team, it's a pretty amazing opportunity for me."

The team will be in Brandon for a pair of games this weekend against Team Saskatchewan. They are then off to South Dakota for a tournament which will be immediately followed up with a tournament in Minneapolis so the next three weeks could include upwards of 15 games. On top of being the only player from outside the city on the team, Mason is also the only indigenous player on the roster. 

"That's very special for me," said Chartrand. "I'm very proud that I get the opportunity to represent not just Pine Creek but all of the communities around it. Playing for this team is a dream come true and I will do whatever it takes to help them win."

Following their action over the next three weeks, the team will continue training in Winnipeg ahead of the national championships in Edmonton late next month. 

The Crocus Cup was held at the Dauphin Lake Golf Club over the weekend.

The Gilbert Plains Country Club; however, came out on top. The winning team consisted of Pearl Maksymetz, Marilyn Schwitzer, Marie Sawyer and Donna Campbell. 

The Barry Trotz watch in Winnipeg has come to an end for now. 

The Stanley Cup winner from Dauphin has announced that he will take a break from coaching to focus on his family.

Trotz didn't rule out a return as a coach; however, he won't be returning for now. 

Photo credit - Dauphin Kings/Pederson Photographic

=====

Each team will play a 58-game schedule as a part of the 2022-23 Manitoba Junior Hockey League schedule.

Here's Dauphin's schedule:

Friday, September 16 vs Neepawa - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, September 17 @ Neepawa - 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, September 20 @ OCN - 7:00 p.m.

Friday, September 23 @ Swan Valley - 7:00 p.m. 

Saturday, September 24 vs Swan Valley - 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, September 27 @ Neepawa - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, September 30 vs Winnipeg Blues - 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, October 2 @ Winnipeg Blues - 5:30 p.m.

Friday, October 7 vs Steinbach Pistons - 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, October 9 @ Steinbach Pistons - 2:30 p.m.

Friday, October 14 @ Selkirk Steelers - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, October 15 vs Selkirk Steelers - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, October 21 @ Virden Oil Capitals - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, October 22 vs Virden Oil Capitals - 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, October 25 @ OCN Blizzard - 7:00 p.m.

Friday, October 28 vs Neepawa Titans - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, October 29 vs Waywayseecappo Wolverines - 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, October 31 @ Waywayseecappo Wolverines - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, November 4 vs Selkirk Steelers - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 5 @ Selkirk Steelers - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 12 vs Virden Oil Capitals - 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 13 vs Winkler Flyers - 4:00 p.m.

Wednesday, November 16 @ Swan Valley - 7:00 p.m.

Friday, November 18 vs Winnipeg Freeze - 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 20 @ Winnipeg Freeze - 6:00 p.m.

Tuesday, November 22 vs Portage Terriers - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, November 25 @ Neepawa Titans - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 26 vs Neepawa Titans - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, December 2 @ Winkler Flyers - 7:00 p.m.

Saturday, December 3 vs Winkler Flyers - 7:30 p.m.

Wednesday, December 7 @ Portage Terriers - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, December 9 @ Winnipeg Freeze - 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, December 11 vs Swan Valley - 4:00 p.m.

Friday, December 16 vs Swan Valley - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, December 17 vs Waywayseecappo Wolverines - 7:30 p.m.

== Christmas Break ==

Friday, January 6 @ Winnipeg Blues - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, January 7 vs Winnipeg Blues - 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, January 17 @ OCN Blizzard - 7:00 p.m.

Friday, January 20 vs Waywayseecappo Wolverines - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, January 21 @ Waywayseecappo Wolverines - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, January 27 vs OCN Blizzard - 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, January 29 vs OCN Blizzard - 4:00 p.m.

Friday, February 3 vs Niverville Nighthawks - 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, February 5 @ Niverville Nighthawks - 3:00 p.m.

Tuesday, February 7 @ Virden Oil Capitals - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, February 10 vs Winnipeg Freeze - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, February 11 vs OCN Blizzard - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, February 17 vs Steinbach Pistons - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, February 18 @ Steinbach Pistons - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, February 24 vs Virden Oil Capitals - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, February 25 @ Virden Oil Capitals - 7:30 p.m.

Wednesday, March 1 @ Swan Valley - 12:30 p.m.

Friday, March 3 vs Niverville Nighthawks - 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, March 5 @ Niverville Nighthawks - 3:00 p.m.

Tuesday, March 7 @ Waywayseecappo Wolverines - 7:30 p.m.

Friday, March 10 @ Portage Terriers - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, March 11 vs Portage Terriers - 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, March 18 @ Winkler Flyers - 7:30 p.m. 

The playoffs open Friday, March 24. 

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers remain undefeated after beating Hamilton 26-12.

The defending CFL champions didn't trail for the entire game.

Michael Domagala tied the game 6-6 with a 49-yard field goal at the start of the second quarter.

However, Winnipeg quickly responded with a 48-yard punt by Marc Liegghio to Hamilton's zero line for the single.

Carla Wolfenden has always been one to push herself. Whether it's at the office, at home or anywhere in between, there is no challenge that is too tall for Carla.

In this instance, it was a daunting task on a bike that she was put up against and she completed it with flying colours. From Dauphin, Carla was in Asessippi recently for the Level 1 Professional Mountain Bike Instructor course. A rigorous test it was, a test that was completed by Carla. 

"It was so difficult and so hot," said Wolfenden. "It's a pretty great feeling, I'm definitely proud and I'm happy I was able to complete it."

They were supposed to be able to use the lift to get up the ski hill; however, that wasn't the case so Carla had to ride up the hill eight or nine times. It was at that time when Carla didn't think she was going to be able to do it, but she stuck to the process and got the job done. 

Carla was already an instructor and is one of the main instructors for the 'Kids in Mud' program, but now having her new certification, she can take things to the next level. Also passing the test with Carla were Melisa Stefaniw and Carla's husband, Chris. Alongside Alex, there are now four certified instructors for Dauphin.

In case you were wondering what 'Kids in Mud' is, it's a specialized program for 6 to 16-year-olds and they train at Northgate Trails. Carla says the program has been an overwhelming success with a great group of kids. 

"We have so many talented kids right here in Dauphin," said Wolfenden. "All this talent likely wouldn't have been discovered without the Northgate Trails, that just speaks of the importance of this network. It's a really fun program, it's the most fun I've ever had leading a group in sport."