Horizon Central Athletic Association school coaches recognized for their contributions

Photos courtesy of Horizon Central Athletic Association. Chad Hofmann of Muenster School, Drew Ross of Englefeld School, Lisa Schwark of Three Lakes School and Luke Strueby of Wakaw School were recognized by the Horizon Central Athletic Association for their work in supporting student athletic programs.

Nicole Goldsworthy, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, SASKTODAY.ca

The Horizon Central Athletic Association recognized eight individuals in 2023 for their outstanding contributions to school athletics programs.

The HCAA Recognition Awards usually presented at the 2023 HCAA Spring Meeting, however the meeting was held virtually.

Among the awardees were:

Drew Ross (Englefeld School)

Drew Ross has a deep commitment to the students and staff of Englefeld School, and demonstrates this commitment in many ways, according to the HCAA. Ross spends countless hours after school hours on behalf of the student-athletes. For home tournaments, he plans all aspects including breakfast for the visiting team and staying overnight in the school to ensure that everything runs smoothly. He spends many weekends away with Englefeld School teams.

Ross’s coaching is exemplary, the HCAA said. His quiet, respectful demeanour sets a great example for the student athletes. He believes in creating a team that exemplifies respect, loyalty, and fairness.

His senior boys volleyball team recently won the Saskatchewan High Schools Athletic Association Sportsmanship Award, Ross also manages the intramural scheduling in the school. He is almost always in the gym with the students during noon hour Intramurals, often participating with the students or officiating. He is also extremely motivated in planning high school sporting excursions every year, including downhill skiing excursions as far away as Banff.

Lisa Schwark (Three Lakes School, Middle Lake)

Lisa Schwark has been coaching for over 20 years in Cudworth and most recently Middle Lake, according to the HCAA. In her time in these schools, she has coached just about every activity. Even when no daycare was available, she would be conducting practice while her own children would play on the stage. She is always there for the students and pushes them to be their best. Lisa’s biggest passion is curling. She coached many teams in Cudworth and then continued into Three Lakes School in Middle Lake. Long road trips to seek out weekend bonspiels were never considered a chore, and the sleepovers were always memorable.

Schwark is a fabulous coach, the HCAA said. Since coming to Three Lakes School, Lisa has coached nonstop. Her cross country running team has recently captured a Provincial team medal. She also coaches all of the badminton within the school, and is a major contributor at the District track meet each season.

Luke Strueby (Wakaw School)

Luke Strueby has been in Wakaw for eight years and has served as Wakaw School’s athletic director, main physical education teacher, official, and high school coach, according to the HCAA. Luke has put in many hours with senior girls volleyball, badminton, and track & field.

Luke is always willing to start new programs, cover for other coaches, or pick up other duties to make sure that the students have an opportunity to play. Luke has also been actively officiating sports like football and basketball to ensure that those sports are able to run in Wakaw.

Chad Hofmann (Muenster School)

Chad Hofmann has coached multiple teams and sports at both the junior and senior levels for many years, according to the HCAA. Under Chad’s leadership, the athletes learn more than just game strategies and skills. Sportsmanship, work ethic, teamwork, and integrity are other fundamentals that he instills.

Chad also works at developing strong relationships with the athletes both in the classroom and with their team. Competing at the highest level is always a goal, however, Chad also stresses the character building that comes with competing.

As hard as Hofmann works with his athletes, he spends as much time working behind the scenes, the HCAA said. Chad has been the HCAA School Representative at Muenster School for more than a decade, and his passion for athletics filters down to the students. The amount of time that Chad contributes is astounding, and it is all for the kids. The staff, students, and families of Muenster School have been very fortunate to have had Mr. Hofmann as their coach and athletic director.

Other award winners were:

• James Holowaty (Wadena Composite School)

• Jill Heisler (William Derby School, Strasbourg)

• Kelly Lowe (William Derby School, Strasbourg)

• Lee Bells (Winston High School, Watrous)