It’s been a banner year, athletically speaking, for Ecole St Denis, and Cedric Primeau is just one of the reasons why. The Grade 8 student, the youngest of two children in the family, has balanced quite nicely between his first year of “AAA” hockey and the demands of school sports.
Originally born in Amos (Quebec), Primeau and family are well-travelled across Northern Ontario, with stops at various times in Timmins, North Bay and Elliot Lake before settling down in Sudbury some four years ago.
Although he first laced up the skates at the tender age of three and has played “AA” hockey in Greater Sudbury the past two years, the 2009-2010 season was his first successful attempt at cracking the defense corps with the Sudbury Minor Bantam “AAA” Wolves, a progression that he thoroughly enjoyed.
“It’s a good challenge – the game is faster and you have to make your decisions a bit faster”, explained the 13 year old blueliner. Throw in a steady mix of school volleyball and basketball, and one can quickly see the importance of sports in Cedric Primeau’s busy schedule.
“It’s a good pastime – most of what I do involves sports”, he says. “But my mom always told me – “school first” – so I have to keep my marks up if I want to play sports.” Very wise advice indeed.
Primeau suggests that while he has never really struggled in making friends at his new elementary schools, his involvement with sport at St Denis has provided a wonderful opportunity, both competitively and socially.
“They (St Denis) have standards and want to win. They have conditioning to try and keep us in good shape”, he notes. “And it’s nice spending time with my friends, like when we go out of town for Franco tournament – that’s always fun.”
A very natural athlete, it’s of little surprise that St Denis basketball coach Martin Nadeau considers Cedric Primeau one of the key cogs to what has become a very successful basketball program.
Still, it’s hard to unseat Canada’s favourite winter sport passion. “They’re both pretty important, but hockey is probably more of a commitment”, says Primeau. “Commit to hockey, show up every time, and then basketball comes second.”
While the time may come when he has to make a choice, for now, Primeau appreciates the synergy between the two sports, taking some of his hockey background as he started developing his basketball skills.
“I think it helped with my vision on the court, always pushing the pace and moving the ball (or puck) quickly – that and the conditioning.” As for a choice of high schools, this one is something of a no brainer.
Primeau will attend College Notre-Dame, where his aunt (Joanne Chretien) is the principal. He says that along with basketball, he foresees taking a crack at football at some point in time at CND.
With his sporting talent, it’s a pretty safe bet that Cedric Primeau will make a whole slew of friends (and fans) quickly at his new school next fall - just as he’s done several times before.
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