Steve Seibel was getting ready to officiate a basketball game on Friday night.
And the sun will rise in the east again this morning.
Seibel, an internationally recognized official who was honoured Thursday night as B.C.'s amateur sport official of the year, spent last night working a Canada West men's basketball playoff game between the Manitoba Bisons and the host UBC Thunderbirds.
But the memories from the night before, when he was among those saluted during the Sport BC athlete of the year awards gala at the River Rock Theatre in Richmond, were fresh in his mind.
Also nominated for the award were Judy Armstrong of Kamloops, who is heavily involved with the Kamloops Track and Field Club, and rugby referee Dave Smortchevsky of North Vancouver.
"Yeah, I was very surprised," Seibel said of his selection. "With Judy being nominated . . . I don't know the rugby referee but I've heard a lot of good things about him. It was quite a surprise."
Seibel admitted to feeling a bit more than surprise, too.
"It's an honour," he said, before adding that "it's interesting because . . . I was a little bit embarrassed by it. I don't think referees should be recognized with awards. We're there to do a service and do it well.
"But, at the same time, I appreciate being involved with all the athletes and being recognized."
Seibel, a lawyer with the local firm Cundari Seibel LLP, is an internationally recognized basketball official; in fact, he worked the men's basketball tournament at the 2008 Olympic Summer Games in Beijing.
He recently returned from Corrientes, Argentina, where he worked qualifying games in the FIBA Americas League.
And next on his schedule is an assignment in Xalapa, Veracruz, Mexico. He leaves next week and will be there through March 6 as he officiates in the FIBA Americas League Final Four.
Mexico? Yes, his wife, Teresa, has concerns.
"It's the same thing she thought when I was in Argentina," he said. "She just wants to make sure that I'm safe.
"FIBA takes good care of us. We go there and work the games and we're OK there."
When he gets back from Mexico, he said, he'll put the whistle away, at least for a while.
"The season ends after the Final Four," he said, "then I can return to family."
You can bet Teresa and their children, Solomon and Sophia, can hardly wait.
Anatoly Bondarchuk, the throws coach at the high-performance centre in Kamloops, also was nominated for a BC Sport award. He was up against swimming coach Randy Bennett of the Victoria Academy of Swimming and UBC volleyball coach Doug Reimer as coach of the year. The award went to Reimer.
For a complete list of nominees and winners, go to sportbc.com.
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