Team Nunavut’s women’s volleyball team celebrates scoring a point in Game 1 against Newfoundland and Labrador at the Canada Summer Games. From left to right: Kailee Karlik, Angela Idlout-Casey, Eleanor Oolayou. (Photo by Denis Cahill)

Canada Summer Games: Week 2 in photos

The 2022 Canada Summer Games came to a close Aug. 21 in Ontario’s Niagara region

By Madalyn Howitt

The 2022 Canada Summer Games came to a close Sunday in Ontario’s Niagara region with volleyball player Shawna Kyak carrying the flag for Team Nunavut as the team entered the closing ceremonies.

Both the women’s and men’s indoor volleyball teams finished last in their respective tournaments, but their appearance at the games was really more about breaking down barriers than chasing medals.

“This meant so much to them and they never gave up. I hope these athletes will inspire others to always give everything they have no matter how big or how hard an obstacle may be,” said Beverly Netusil, coach for the women’s indoor volleyball team.

“I feel volleyball has always been a pretty popular sport in Nunavut, but definitely this opportunity and the amount of attention and respect these athletes are getting from their territory will encourage many more athletes to pick up the sport.”

This year was the first time Nunavut entered team competitions at the summer games, in beach volleyball and indoor volleyball.

Getting the teams to the games was an eight-year process for organizers, said Team Nunavut chef de mission Jeff Seeteenak.

“It takes a lot of work, a lot of support,” he said. “Our kids can be competitive when given the opportunity.”

The teams also inspired organizers at the games — Team Nunavut received the Jack Pelech Award, which goes to the provincial or territorial team whose athletes, coaches and support staff best combine competitive performance, good sportsmanship and friendship.

The women’s indoor volleyball team included coach Beverly Netusil, assistant coach Abigail Dueck, captain Shanti Dias, players Amber Graham, Shawna Kyak, Eleanor Oolayou, Ava Whitworth, Angela Idlout-Casey, Kailee Karlik, Trinity Rudolph and Alyson Mckay.

The men’s indoor volleyball included coach Brady Fischer, assistant coach John Legate, players Dillion Barrieau, Luke Cornthwaite, Evan Kyak, Alex Palongayak, Thomas Porter, Tashina Chakonza, Gholam Dareshoripour, Lane Onalik, Carter Poinek and Clifford Jr. Saituuq.

Check out some photos below recapping the second and final week of the competition, which ran from Aug. 6 to 21. Closing ceremonies were held at Queen Victoria Park, close to Niagara Falls.

— With files from Gord Howard

  • Nunavut's men's volleyball team (red) in action against Team Yukon at the Canada Summer Games on Aug 18. (Photo by Denis Cahill, special to Nunatsiaq News)
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