County student athletes at the head of the class

THE BELLINGHAM HERALDJuly 7, 2013 

The days of the dumb jock are long gone. The Class of 2013 in Whatcom County, which in many ways had unprecedented success on the fields of play the past four years, also was remarkably impressive in the classroom.

Of the 53 valedictorians announced by the 11 Whatcom County schools that had teams compete in Washington Interscholastic Activities Association sporting events this year, 29 of them participated in at least one sport during their senior year.

Even though the criteria for selecting valedictorians has changed in recent years, allowing for multiple honorees at the same school, it doesn't take away from an impressive list of young men and women that truly put the "student" in student athlete during their high school careers.

Time management and devotion are obviously necessary skills, as student athletes must balance school work and homework with practice time to be successful in both.

"For me, sports was probably beneficial," said Lynden valedictorian Maddi Hommes, who was one of two student athletes on the list that was a three-sport athlete at the varsity level. "It kept my post-school day pretty structured. I knew I only had a certain about of time to study, so I couldn't procrastinate. It almost forced me to become a more effective student."

Hommes plans to play volleyball and compete in the heptathlon at Seattle Pacific University next year. Besides volleyball and track, she also played on the girls' basketball team for the Lions.

Meagan McIntyre also participated in three sports at Sehome - cross country, basketball and softball. She plans to attend Scripps College in Claremont, Calif., and compete for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps cross country and softball teams.

In all, 14 student athletes competed on the varsity level in more than one sport and earned valedictorian honors this year.

LC COACH HONORED

After leading the Lynden Christian boys' golf team to a second-place finish this spring at the Class 1A State Championships, coach Dana Hagen has been selected the 2013 Washington State Coaches' Association Coach of the Year.

The Lyncs placed third in a tight race for the Northwest Conference title this year, successfully defended their 1A tri-district title and sent five golfers through to state.

At state, LC had three golfers place in the top 15, led by Willy Scholten's fourth-place showing, and scored 98 points to finish behind Ilwaco's 1321/2.

PIONEERS PLACE 2 ON ALL-TOURNEY TEAM

Nooksack Valley junior outfielder Hailey Hunt and junior infielder/outfielder Chloe Gardner were selected to the Class 1A All-State Softball Tournament team.

The Pioneers beat Elma in the first round of the tournament, before falling to Lakeside in the state quartefinals and Hoquiam in a consolation game.

Reach David Rasbach at david.rasbach@bellinghamherald.com or 360-715-2286.

STUDENT ATHLETE STANDOUTS

Whatcom County valedictorians from the Class of 2013 that played on the varsity level of at least one sport during their senior school years:

BELLINGHAM Sports

Monica Ziels Basketball

BLAINE Sports

Emily Grayston Tennis

LYNDEN Sports

Bret DeGraaff Football, basketball

Madison Hommes Volleyball, basketball, track

Michelle Navis Cross country, softball

LYNDEN CHRISTIAN Sports

Toby Dalla Santa Tennis, soccer

Trevor Dalla Santa Tennis, soccer

Tyler Reardon Cross country, track

Hunter Weinert Cross country, soccer

MERIDIAN Sports

Tucker Bronkema Baseball

MOUNT BAKER Sports

Sarah Finger Soccer

NOOKSACK VALLEY Sports

Melissa Stadt Soccer, basketball

SEHOME Sports

Kristen Chalmers Tennis

Charles Linneman Basketball, Soccer

Meagan McIntyre Cross country, basketball, softball

Nicola Morrow Tennis

Zoe Sheinkopf Swimming

Liam Toney Cross country, track

SQUALICUM Sports

Riley Andert Golf

Andrea DeVere Soccer, track

Dylan Dubuque Cross country, track

Anthony Goo Tennis

Brock Jorgensen Football

Hannah Lewis Basketball

Zoe Peterson Soccer, track

Zoe Roberts Tennis

Lauren Wallace Soccer

Caroline Wilson Volleyball

Josh Yeend Cross country

Reach DAVID RASBACH at david.rasbach@bellinghamherald.com or call 715-2271.

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