Dan Keller and Brittany Wiebe post with their Crocus Plains athlete of the year awards on Friday.
The more Dan Keller thought about the Crocus Plains male athlete of the year award, the more he thought he didn’t have a chance to win it.
Keller knew other Plainsmen — like offensive lineman Sean Simpson — are going on to play sports at the university level and he was not. He was only a two-sport athlete as well, playing on the varsity football and basketball teams this season.
However, the 18-year-old Brandonite was pleasantly surprised to win the award Friday and feels he stood out based on being a well-rounded individual.
In addition to focusing on sports and academics, Keller is also involved in the Crocus jazz band, CP Express and was in a performance of Anne of Green Gables last school year.
"I think the reason I won it is because I’m the most rounded individual," he said. "Was I surprised? Yeah, I was definitely surprised."
"It’s just a great feeling," he continued. "It’s just kind of a highlight of my whole athletic year at Crocus. When I look at it, I’ll remember all the things that I did and most importantly my teammates and coaches and all the positive things that I shared with them."
Although the Grade 12 student has been named Crocus’s male athlete of the year, he’s not sure how big of a role athletics will play in his future.
Keller will attend St. Mary’s University in Halifax in the fall where he will study international development. He plans to focus on his studies and he’s hoping to join a band.
"I would love to be in a Celtic band or something," he said. "I love to play the mandolin or drums. I’d love to be in a band. My goal is to gig around this summer until I go study, but definitely to have the whole atmosphere in university."
While Keller is looking at becoming more active in the arts scene in university, Plainsmen female athlete of the year Brittany Wiebe will be dedicating a lot of time to sports.
The 17-year-old guard has earned a full NCAA scholarship to play women’s basketball with the North Dakota State University Bison in Fargo, N.D.
Since Wiebe — who will study exercise sciences — is continuing to play basketball, the Plainsmen point guard said she will always treasure memories of playing the sport with Crocus. One of her season highlights came with the varsity girls volleyball team in November.
"(A highlight) this year was making it to the volleyball provincial final with the huge crowd there and then losing a tough one in the fifth set there," said Wiebe, who also played soccer and competed in five track and field events for Crocus.
While Wiebe had a busy playing schedule, she also spent time helping younger children develop a passion for sports by working at basketball camps. She also coached and officiated in a variety of youth sports.
Since Wiebe and Keller were so involved in their communities, Wiebe feels they are great recipients for the school’s awards.
"I think Dan and I are a great pair," she said. "We’re very team-orientated and all about the team first. We’re a lot about the winning and the team bonding and stuff.
"We’re good picks this year and we’re very spread out, not just focused on one thing. We’re very school-orientated."
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition June 16, 2012