May 20, 2019
Writer: Jaime Strobel

The Standard Journal is hosting its fifth S.J. Sports Stars Awards night May 21 at South Fremont High School in St. Anthony at 6 p.m.

“This event is all about the athletes,” Jeremy Cooley, general manager of the Standard Journal said.

In 2015 the paper started this program to recognize exceptional high school athletes in all sport divisions within the Upper Valley. Students will be recognized from Madison, North Fremont, South Fremont and Sugar-Salem High Schools.

Four athletes are chosen and recognized from each sport, and one athlete is selected from each school to be honored as top athlete.

Some of the top athletic awards include top student athlete, freshman athlete, top male and female coaches of the year and a top team of the year.

The coaches, athletic directors and staff help in deciding which students will be selected each year.

“It is a hard process because we have a lot of talented athletes in all of our high schools,” Cooley said.

The event will feature Kalon Ludvigson as the keynote speaker.

Ludvigson was an elite tumbling athlete and holds many world records from around the world. In 2013 he suffered a spinal injury and was left paralyzed from the waist down.

“He’s changed his focus from just athletics to athletics and academics,” Veronica Varnedoe, general reporter at the Standard Journal said. “We expect that he’ll probably be talking about the correlation between the two. He’s a really nice guy and really inspiring.”

In previous years, the Standard Journal has had Rulon Gardener, Brandon Bair and the general manager for the Chuckers come and speak to the athletes.

A week after the event, the athletes will be featured in the Standard Journal.

“We have a physical copy to remember the event,” Koster Kennard Sports reporter for the Standard Journal said.

The Standard Journal encourages anyone who is interested in attending S.J. Sports Stars Awards to order tickets due to limited seating.

You can get tickets by contacting the Standard Journal at (208)356-5441.

If tickets are sold out, people can watch a live broadcast of the event on the Standard Journal’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/uppervalleystandardjournal/.