The Holy Trinity Academy Knights MVP felt a bit out of place when he picked up his trophy late in November.
However, being able to adjust to a new position was one of the reasons quarterback Julian Jenkins won the honour at the Knights football awards banquet Nov. 30 at St. James Church.
“We have so many great athletes on this team that at the beginning of the season if you told me I would be MVP, I wouldn’t have believed you,” Jenkins said. “But the cards fell the right way and here I am.”
Jenkins was slotted as a key receiver for the Knights at the start of the season, hauling in passes from starting QB Adam Dielissen.
However, those plans were kyboshed when Dielissen broke his collarbone on the Knights’ first drive of the season.
“That was a real swing of events when I became QB,” Jenkins said with a chuckle. “I just kind of had to roll with it. The team really helped. The O-line and the skilled position players all made plays for me.
“I had to adjust on the fly, but with all these great players, I trusted in the team to keep it going with me at quarterback.”
Jenkins was MVP on the most successful Knights team since 2013. They finished 5-1, with their only blemish a 33-0 loss to the eventual Tier II provincial champions the Foothills Falcons in the Big Rock Conference final in October.
However, the Knights had downed Foothills 14-10 earlier this season — that was the only loss to a Tier II school the Falcons have suffered in each of their past three provincial championship seasons.
Jenkins got to return to his old position for one play in the victory over the Falcons.
And, he made the most of it.
He scored a major on a 75-yard pass-and catch play when Grade 10 backup QB Ben Leggett threw a rope in to Jenkins’ soft hands who turned up-field for the TD.
“I kind of did a double-move on the DB and got open and Ben put the ball in there perfectly.”
Three-year veteran Knight Evan Bruynzeel was a 200-pound plus wrecking ball at fullback, but it was his wreaking havoc on opposing QBs, runningbacks and anyone not in an HTA green-and-black jersey that resulted him in being named defensive player of the year.
“The highlight for me was beating Foothills that first game — I knew a lot of guys on that team,” Bruynzeel said. “When they (the Falcons) won provincials, I was glad that at least we lost to the winners.”
What he is most glad about is wearing the Knights colours for three years.
“It’s meant more than I can speak of — so many life-lessons along with the football skills I picked up from great coaching,” Bruynzeel said. “Just the dedication, the hard-work and overcoming adversity — the whole aspect of football — carries over into your whole life.”
The other recipients at the Holy Trinity Academy Knights football awards banquet were: Knightly Warrior — Spencer Kessel; Rookie of the year — Ben Leggett; Student athletes of the year — Grade 12, Riley Bahl; Grade 11, Austin Shawaga and Grade 10, Ben Leggett. Heart of the Knight Award — Nick DiMaulo; Faith and Service — Peter Ottenbreit; Lineman of the year — Jacob Kamajian; Nick Beaulieu Memorial Award — Aidan MacIsaac; Iron Knight Award —Bruynzeel; Leadership and Dedication award — Jenkins; Most Improved Player — Joash Binet; Workout Get Ripped award — Seth Obrigewitsch; Big Rock Council all-stars — David Bowers, Carson McKenzie, Jacob Gulbransen, Kessel, Bruynzeel, Jenkins and Kamajian; Special Teams Player of the Year — McKenzie; Offensive player of the year — Jenkins; Defensive player of the year — Bruynzeel; Most Valuable Player — Jenkins.