On April 21, the Manitoba High School Athletic Association inducted Michelle Sawatsky-Koop, along with five other athletes, three builders and one team into the High School Hall of Fame. The inductees were honoured during a special reception at the Holiday Inn South.
“I think the greatest honour is to see who is all on the list, and go whoa who am I to be among these people,” recalled Sawatsky-Koop. “I am grateful to my coach – Shannon Kehler – she was the one that told me to go out and try out; she told me it doesn’t matter where you are from you can do this.”
Sawatsky grew up in Steinbach and started her career as an elite member of Steinbach Regional Secondary School Sabres (SRSS). She led the SRSS Volleyball team to the 1987 Provincial AA Championship and was also setter on the 1989 Canada Summer Games Bronze Medalist team.
“I remember that win and it was the biggest win I had ever tasted to that point, it was as big as any Olympic win,” recalled Sawatsky-Koop of winning the Provincial Championship.
She was also the starting setter at the University of Manitoba when as they won National Championships in 1990, 1991 and 1992 and was named CIAU/CIS Player of the Year in 1991, 1992, and in 1993 was named University of Manitoba Female Athlete of the Year.
Sawatsky also participated on two World Student Volleyball Games teams in 1991 and 1992 and on the Senior National Team in 1995. She participated in the Bronze Medal Game in the Pan American Games in Argentina in 1996 and also was a member of the team that finished 9th in the Summer Olympics in Atlanta.
On April 21, Steinbach’s Michelle Sawatsky-Koop was inducted into the Manitoba High School Athletic Hall of Fame by MHSAA President Scott Kwasnitza.