Kenton’s Gage Martinook could lay claim to Kordell Stewart’s nickname.
In the mid-1990s, Stewart earned the moniker “Slash” while playing quarterback/receiver/rusher for the NFL’s Pittsburgh Steelers. This past season in the Manitoba Major Junior Football League, the son of Jeff and Marilyn played multiple positions for the Westman Wolverines.
“Gage is a real utility guy for us, lining up in the back field as a tailback and fullback, as well as outside at wing or slotback,” Wolverines head coach Brady Dane said.
“He has also this season been called upon in multiple games to fill in on defence at linebacker and defensive end due to injuries. He is a strong, athletic player, who brings a lot to the table.”
As well as those positions, Martinook was also utilized as a punter.
“The thing I enjoy most about it is the variety and being able to see different sides of the game,” the former Park West Outlaws player said. “Since I’ve played offence for most of my football career, it was nice to have a change and be thrown in when needed on defence.”
Martinook has played for the Wolverines since he graduated high school in 2015. The Westman program and the MMJFL gives players a chance to keep competing in football after high school. While the Wolverines have to travel to the Winnipeg area for their road games, the MMJFL schedule is such that players can work or go to school as well as play. Martinook has been working as anelectrical apprentice with R.T Jebb Electric out of Elkhorn.
As a youth, Martinook was a standout downhill skier. However, football definitely runs in his family. His father played at Brandon’s Crocus Plains Regional Secondary School and the University of Manitoba. The elder Martinook was an assistant coach when his son suited up for the Outlaws.
“My family’s support along with my girlfriend and friends is great,” Martinook said. “They have always encouraged and pushed me to do better as a person and a player. Having my dad play football at a higher level when he was my age is perfect because he has so much knowledge of the game and will give me pointers whenever needed!”