Kate Starbird heads induction class to WIAA Hall of Fame
Former Lakes High and WNBA player Kate Starbird honored in ceremony Wednesday.
Seattle Times staff reporter
RENTON – Kate Starbird struggles to select a favorite moment from her storied basketball career, which took her from Lakes High near Tacoma to Stanford to the WNBA.
But the highlight of her prep career? That’s a slam dunk.
“We upset Auburn my junior year,” she said Wednesday following her induction into the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association Hall of Fame at the Renton Pavilion Event Center. “They were ranked seventh in the country, and we were not anywhere near seventh in the country.”
Starbird, who graduated from Lakes in 1993 and went on to become the Naismith College player of the year in 1997, was one of two athletes honored in the Hall of Fame class for this year. She was joined by former soccer star Lori Henry of Shorewood, who went on to earn All-America honors at North Carolina and helped the U.S. win the women’s World Cup in 1991.
Former coaches Jim Clem (Burlington-Edison baseball) and Tom Kramer (Langley girls tennis) also were inducted, along with Steve Colby (official, basketball) and Dave Weatherred (fine arts, music).
During her acceptance speech, Starbird drew chuckles when she talked about being drawn back to the Seattle area in 2012 to become an assistant professor at the University of Washington’s Department of Human Centered Design and Engineering, noting her previous stops with the Seattle Reign and then Seattle Storm ended prematurely.
“I’m hoping this career will keep me longer in Seattle than my other ones,” she said. “My first Seattle team folded and my second one cut me.”
Henry, a 1984 Shorewood graduate, coached women’s soccer collegiately following her playing days, but said she is happy now to be an assistant at Shorecrest. There, the Kellogg Middle School teacher can follow the progress of her former students. She also coaches track and wrestling at Kellogg.
Clem won 481 games as baseball coach at Burlington-Edison — many of those coming with sons Zach (2002 grad) and Jacob (2006) in the lineup. Both went on to play at Washington and professionally. Clem, who graduated from Enumclaw in 1971, has returned to the B-E program as an assistant coach and also is the pitching coach and head recruiter for the Bellingham Bells of the Collegiate West Coast League.
Kramer coached girls tennis more than 30 years at Langley High, now known as South Whidbey, then turned the program over to his daughter.
Also honored were the two Smart Choices Scholarship winners, Drew Wallen of Auburn Riverside and Jenna Moser of Colton. The $5,000 scholarships are based on athletics, academics, activities, community service and leadership.
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