Today we take a look at some of the area’s all-time best female athletes.
As a sort of disclaimer, I never saw Pasco’s Karen Murray or Kamiakin’s Tondi Redden play. But I know they were two of the best.
From whom I saw, Hanford’s Tori Baker was one of the first who dazzled me with her basketball skills. Her between the legs dribble, snappy passes and incredible long-distance shooting were a joy to behold.
She had a teammate, Kristi Reichert, who did the dirty work (rebounding, blocking out) but would have been the star on any other team. She had incredible leaping ability.
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Kamiakin standout Meotis Erickson dominated on the soccer pitch and was a pretty fair basketball player too. She played for the Boston Breakers of the WUSA and currently lives in the New England area.
I always felt Hope Solo was a great athlete at Richland, both in soccer and basketball. But in no way could I have ever forseen her becoming the world’s top women’s soccer goalie as she is now. In high school, remember, she was a goal-scoring machine.
Prosser’s Kelly Blair dominated in three sports -- volleyball, basketball and track. She led the Mustangs to a state basketball title, but it was track where she really shined. One year at the Pasco Invitational, I watched her finish second in the team points race. She competed in the Atlanta Olympics in the heptathlon.
Pasco’s Debbie Sporcich was a standout from her sophomore year on. She had a soft shooting touch, great passing ability and owned the boards. Back then coach John Shimek’s teams were a joy to watch, because they just tore their opponents apart, just by running the offense or defense.
Another basketball player, Kennewick’s Leilani Mitchell, was so good as a freshman on. It’s no wonder she’s in the WNBA now.
Two others come to mind -- Walla Walla’s Seville Broussard and Kamiakin’s Emily Autrey. Broussard was a great leaper in the high jump and excelled in the hurdles.
Autrey was a great basketball player, who played for Washington. But she was a state champion in the 100 meters too.
OK. Who did I miss?