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Raiders Earn Second Place Overall In State NYO Competition

Bea Sevilla

Unalaska’s Native Youth Olympic Team took home six gold medals, a new state record, and a second place finish at the state competition. The events started on April 25th and took place at the Alaska Airlines Center in Anchorage, Alaska.

The coach of the boys’ team, Mr. Steven Gregory, said that, “I’m really proud of the kids for getting second place, it’s not easy to be in the top two teams but they are very consistent, which I like as a coach. We got better and we scored more points. Overall I am very pleased with the results.”

The seniors in the team took home a total of 4 gold medals with Trevor Wilson grabbing the 1st place with 94 inches for two-foot high kick, breaking his personal record. Jerome Molina won the gold medal for wrist carry with 511 feet and 2 inches along with carriers, Ariel Go and Trevor Wilson. John Villena was the star of the team; he participated in three events in which he took home all gold medals, living up to his nickname, “Jackpot”. Villena earned gold for an 89-inch Alaskan High Kick attempt, 104-inch One-Foot High Kick Jump, and last but not the least, a 36? 11 ½” in Scissor Broad Jump which is now the new state record for this event. 

Credit Courtesy Cook Inlet Tribal Council NYO Games Alaska
John “Jackpot” Villena took home three gold medals at the State NYO competition

Freshman, Shanelle Palma, showed everyone who was boss by snatching up the gold medal for Indian Stick Pull. Senior, Lisa Tran won 4th place in wrist carry with 218 feet and nine inches with carriers Ariel Go and Trevor Wilson. Lizzie Tran placed 3rd on Scissor Broad Jump with 27? 10 ¾” and Trevor Wilson placed 4th for Seal Hop.

The Unalaska NYO team tied with Lower Kuskokwim School District placing 2nd in state overall. UCSD received 37 points for all the students who placed in the final round. The Unalaska students also won the Academic Excellence Award, which earned them $1000 from The CIRI Cook Inlet Inc. in order to support the sport. John Villena was awarded the overall athlete for accumulating 15 points for Unalaska City School for all three of his events.

Credit Courtesy Cook Inlet Tribal Council NYO Games Alaska
John Villena & Trevor Wilson show off their medals.


The girl’s coach, Genee Shaishnikoff commented that she was happy with all of the results and added that everyone who did not place were extremely close to placing in the finals. “I’m very proud of the students who participated in the events and very happy with the results of the competition.”