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Two Conception Bay North area teens gearing up for Hurricanes tryouts

Duncan Hunt, left, and Daniel Seymour are preparing to play for the Holland College Hurricanes football team in Charlottetown, P.E.I. this fall.
Duncan Hunt, left, and Daniel Seymour are preparing to play for the Holland College Hurricanes football team in Charlottetown, P.E.I. this fall. - SaltWire File Photo

CONCEPTION BAY NORTH, N.L. –  It’s a dream come true for two Conception Bay North area teens who have been chosen to try out for a team that has earned national recognition for successes.

Duncan Hunt, wearing the blue cleats, is pictured in the centre.
Duncan Hunt, wearing the blue cleats, is pictured in the centre.

Duncan Hunt and Daniel Seymour from the Conception Bay North Warriors say they are “excited to start” orientation on Friday Aug. 30, and then training the following week with the Holland College Hurricanes football team in Charlottetown, P.E.I. 

The school has won four Atlantic Football League championships in the past 10 years and has been recognized by the Canadian Football League.

“I’ve been playing football for two years, practicing seven times a week – often by myself – or playing on Tuesdays and Thursdays with my local team. But football has only been around Newfoundland for five or six years,” said Hunt, aged 18, from Carbonear.

Duncan Hunt kicks the ball through the upright goal post and scores for his team.
Duncan Hunt kicks the ball through the upright goal post and scores for his team.

The province’s first official football field, with an upright goal post, was opened at St. John’s Wishingwell Park in Oct. 2018.

“I was the first person in Newfoundland to kick a football through its goal post,” said Hunt. 

“But my main highlight playing football is scoring six or seven touchdowns in one game. I kept receiving the ball after the other team had kicked it, and then running and scoring the touchdown. As a result, this team actually stopped kicking the ball for the rest of that game – and season.”

Hunt and Seymour both play the position of wide receiver.

“The Warriors are a small football league, so everyone plays both sides. I have played the position as wide receiver, linebacker, kick returner, and punt returner,” said Seymour, aged 19, from Shearstown.

“But when I play the wide receiver position, I train daily to keep agile and fast,” he added.

Seymour and Hunt will study an academic degree – first and foremost – at Holland College and, if recruited during tryouts for the football team, hope for future success on the gridiron.

“I’ve always loved sports and once I found out about the creation of the (Warriors) football team in 2014, I’ve played ever since. Every game has been memorable, the practices, and camaraderie – even with the opposing players,” said Seymour.

“But my family and friends are all supporting me along this journey and are excited to see that I’m following my passion.”

When pushed with the thought on playing professional, Hunt said, “While I will pursue a degree in kinesiology at Holland College, it’s my ultimate goal to play in the Canadian Football League or National Football League.”

Daniel Cudmore, athletics development and communications coordinator with Holland College, said the two from Newfoundland will be joined by a mix of athletes.

“In a roster of 65, we have around 15 from P.E.I., as well as athletes from Ontario, Alberta, the first few – I believe just the two – from Newfoundland, some from Mexico, the Bahamas, and Nigeria, all coming to try out for the Hurricanes team,” he said. 

The training camp for football concludes on Sunday, Sept. 8, when the final roster will be made.

The athletes will have one full week of training for their first game on Saturday, Sept. 14.

“When you come to Holland College you know you’re going to get the full package. The Hurricanes are operated by the college directly, so we have our own standards on running things to a high-level. The incoming students will find the smaller class sizes more hands-on, and this is a draw for people.

“Plus, while studying you get to play in a college football team. We’re one of the few (or only) college athletic department’s that operate their football team,” said Cudmore, acknowledging this tends to be more common for larger academic institutions such as universities. 

“We’re entering into a new time here with football in the athletic department,” he continued. “We’ve done a good job of promotion and our players are looked to as the stars on the field.”

For more information on the Holland Hurricanes, visit www.hollandcollege.com/athletics/Football.html.

This article has been edited from an earlier version to correct the name of the Warriors team Hunt and Seymour previously played for.

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