NYO starts season


Photo by Paul Apfelbeck

NYO athlete Shad Fischel at a demonstration event last year during half time at a basketball game.


Native Youth Olympics practice started January 19 in the GILA gym.

The coaches of Native Youth Olympics this year are Dawn Pomrening, academic support teacher, and Paul Apfelbeck, media and information technology teacher. Both teach on the SHS campus.

They are starting off the season with practices on Mondays and Wednesdays 5-6:30 p.m. The first day of practice had 37 students sign up to be a part of the marvelous sport.

“The first day was exciting, I’m really looking forward to the season,” said coach Apfelbeck.

The school had been looking for a coach after Joel Wilkinson, last year’s coach, left GILA to work in the Lower 48. Both teachers decided to work together so the students of GILA can have a sport that many find interesting and fun.

“I heard NYO needed a coach and there was a concern about NYO may not be there, so I stepped up to be the coach,” said Mr. Apfelbeck.

Coach Pomrening is looking to the season.

“I’m really interested in NYO and all the students are interested also, so I wanted the kids to have NYO,” said Mrs. Pomrening

Both teachers have some coaching experience. “I coached volleyball 20 years ago in Tuluksak,” said Mr. Apfelbeck.

“I have coached middle school track & field 11 years ago, youth soccer and youth softball for 10 years and stopped in 2010” said Mrs. Pomrening.

Goals for this year focus on the state championship in April in Anchorage.

“I hope to have a team that does well… I also want to show the community what NYO does,” said Mr. Apfelbeck.

Mrs. Pomrening said, “My goals are to have a great time, have fun, personal growth, and to do great in Anchorage.”