Prince Albert’s Troy Semenchuk named to Grey Cup officiating crew

Troy Semenchuk/Facebook CFL official and Prince Albert resident Troy Semenchuk (No. 24) spots the ball during a games between the Ottawa RedBlacks and Hamilton Tiger-Cats. Semenchuk was selected to work his first Grey Cup game on Monday.

When the Grey Cup kicks off in Regina on Sunday afternoon, there will be a familiar face for many between the sidelines.

Carlton teacher and Prince Albert resident Troy Semenchuk will serve as the umpire for the 109th Grey Cup between the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the Toronto Argonauts.

“This selection is super exciting,” Semenchuk says. “It’s also super humbling. It’s a reflection of being surrounded by so many supportive people who have selflessly given me their time, supervision, coaching and patience. It’s super flattering and it’s a result of being around some great, great people.”

Semenchuk says he received the news of being named to the officiating crew in the Calgary airport while returning home from working the Western Division final.

“The officiating crew was selected on Monday morning after the East and West finals. I was actually flying home and I had a stop in Calgary, and I was talking to one of the [CFL] staff members and I was telling her how one of my buddies [line judge Walt Hawrysh] got selected to the crew. As we were walking through the airport to get to our next game, I took a few steps away and she said ‘Hey Troy, do you know what’s better than your buddy being on that game? You being on the game with him’. It was a special moment and something I’ll never forget.”

Semenchuk is currently in Regina, and he says walking around the city and seeing the atmosphere of the Grey Cup festival has him heavily anticipating the game on Sunday.

“It’s really neat. It’s one thing to visualize that and talk about it. When I arrived in Regina, you actually see it. It’s a national event and a national spotlight. Walking around the streets, hotels and venues here, all the teams are represented. It’s amazing and to just be immersed in that and be part of that, I can’t imagine what it is going to be like to run onto that field on Sunday.”

Besides being an official in the CFL, Semenchuk is also involved in the community serving as a coach with the Carlton Crusaders football program and also officiates in the WHL.

“I am just an active example of what sport can give back to you and what you can get from the game. I came through the sport as a guy who played amateur football and some high school football. I coached a lot of football. I had an opportunity to get into officiating and fell in love with it.” Semenchuk says. “The officials put a great deal of time and effort in like the players do at both the amateur and professional levels. If there’s someone out there that sees me out on that field and that spurs some interest in them to get out officiating in any sport, I’d say the sky is the limit. “

The 109th Grey Cup kicks off on Sunday afternoon at 5pm.