November 20, 2019 | We are officially a week away from winter season tip-off! For the fifth straight year, high school girls and women’s team came together to celebrate girls and women’s basketball in the Puget Sound.
One year older, one year wiser (and for some of us, one year slower), we continue to bring talented and inspiring women to play in front of the high school girls. Among many accomplished women, we were excited to be graced by Darnellia Russell (star of the acclaimed documentary “Heart of the Game” and Washington State champion at Roosevelt High School), Katie Collier (first woman from the state of Washington to be named McDonald’s All-American and starter during UW’s magical run in the NCAA Final Four in 2017), and Ashley Graham (six-year oversea professional and World Guineas Record Holder for free-throws in a minute). In the women’s division, two undefeated teams–Pinnacle Hoops and Victorious Secrets–squared off in the last game of the day, with Pinnacle Hoops prevailing to claim the championship. The winning members were: Ashley Graham (Santa Clara), Kim Faust (Santa Clara), Jen Bresler (Northwest University/Bellevue College), and Charmain Barlow (University of Washington.)
In the high school division, we welcomed a number of teams from Meadowdale/Edmonds-Woodway, Issaquah High School, redmond High School, Franklin/Kentridge High School. It was a squad with a mix of high schools that squeezed on by to an undefeated championship, featuring Myana Calloway (Hazen High School), Cheyenne Huff (Spanaway Lake High School), Nikki Bowen (Lynnwood High School) and Mary Davis (Stadium High School). They took home to prize bags donated by the Seattle Storm. We were beyond excited to see TABLA campers and welcome new players into our community!
Our annual shooting contest, which offers the girls an opportunity to do battle with women, was an exciting one! After three rounds in the free-throw competition, Taylor Zimmerman (Redmond High School), Janelle Chow (University of Idaho), and Erika Cliett (Northwest University) faced off in a shoot-out. All three of them made their first shot. On the second shot, Janelle Chow’s free-throw bounced out and was eliminated. On the third shot, Erika took home the Storm swag!
In the three point shooting contest, after two rounds, Ashley Graham, Kim Faust and Janelle Chow entered the finals. In one minute, Ashley hit 18 shots, Janelle 17, and Kim 16! Whoa! Ashley claims her second three-point contest championship at the Awesome 3-on-3 Jam.
As usual, the funds we raise at the Awesome 3-on-3 Jam go right back to our girls and women’s basketball community. This year, we are making a donation to Rowan Schaberg’s Pick n’ Role Model community project. In her own words: “Pick ‘n Role Models gives women’s basketball game tickets to girls basketball teams that might not be able to otherwise afford bringing their whole team to a game. Watching women’s basketball can be really motivating to young basketball players because they find inspiring role models to look up to and learn from. If more girls are exposed to women’s basketball, respect and love for the women’s game will grow so much.”
Once again, we would like to thank our sponsors–Seattle Storm, DYSports, Above the Game Mental Training–for making this event possible. We enjoy the endless friendships and connections that have been made at our community event, and relish in the opportunity to inspire a younger generation of girls. We also love the opportunity to play basketball for what it is: to compete, to exercise (ha), to laugh, and to love the game.
Thank you to my co-director Sara Thomas and graphic designer Jen Bresler, the Redmond Girls Basketball Booster Club, and everyone who balled out and cheered us on! Full Stop Action Photography gallery of the event can be found on Don’s Facebook page and website.
Yours in Hoops,