Sardis athletic director Brad Geary taking a look at the new Athletics Hall of Fame wall. (Eric J. Welsh/Chilliwack Progress)

Sardis athletic director Brad Geary taking a look at the new Athletics Hall of Fame wall. (Eric J. Welsh/Chilliwack Progress)

Chilliwack’s Sardis secondary honouring athletics with new hall of fame

The high school has set aside space to honour its past, present and future sports stars

Sardis secondary school is celebrating its athletic past with a new sports-specific Hall of Fame display.

Steps inside the front door, hanging a left on the way into the gymnasium, the right wall is now dedicated to Falcon greats like Rick Klassen (football), Carmen Kirkness (field hockey), Shaun Horcoff (hockey) and Jake Mouritzen (soccer).

Those four, and several others, were previously inducted into a Sardis Hall of Fame that occupied the school’s main hallway and also included non-sports standouts. Athletic director Brad Geary said the idea for a dedicated athletics HOF sprang from the school’s 50th anniversary celebration in 2019.

Previous inductees will be recognized above the glass/wood display case that runs the length of the hall. The display case itself will be set aside for new inductees.

“We’re pretty excited and the kids will like having a look as they walk down to the gym,” Geary said. “I am amazed that this generation of students are interested in past alumni who have gone through our school and done things. They are aware of it, and that really drove home that it’s important to emphasize the history that our school has.”

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A graphical wrap on the opposite wall shows all of the sports currently offered at the school, everything from curling to field lacrosse, volleyball to track and field. While sports like football and basketball often get the most attention, the hallway provides an opportunity to put lower-profile sports in the spotlight.

“Field hockey, as an example, is just as important as any other sport offered at our school, and we have a provincial championship banner from field hockey hanging in our gym,” Geary said.

Geary and Sardis principal Dan Heisler have focused on building an athletics culture at the school, and Geary sees this as another big step.

“It takes a lot of effort from a lot of people, and we have a lot of supportive coaches,” he said. “There aren’t too many things that can match the memories of playing sports with their friends in high school and the academic side goes hand-in-hand with that. If we can get kids really tied into school through their athletic interests, we can pull them down the academic road and try to get as many kids off to post-secondary as we can.

“Hopefully, a lot of that happens through athletic scholarship situations. Having kids pursue post-secondary athletics and academics, to me, is the ultimate win.”

A selection committee has already been struck and criteria for induction agreed upon.

The committee will meet each June to select that year’s inductees.

Find the nomination form online at sardissecondary.sd33.bc.ca/sites/sardissecondary.sd33.bc.ca/files/2021-10/Athletic Hall of Fame Nomination Form (2)_0.pdf


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