Posts Tagged ‘Whitman’

Makana Stone, forever a force of nature. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Every bucket, every rebound, every moment of on-court brilliance built to this.

Two days after graduating from Whitman College, Coupeville’s Makana Stone received her school’s highest athletic honor Tuesday morning.

The former Wolf, who finished as the #5 scorer and #2 rebounder in Blues women’s basketball history, received the Mignon Borleske Award.

The honor recognizes a graduating senior student-athlete for “their career athletic ability and accomplishments, leadership and sportsmanship qualities, and contributions to the campus and community as a whole.”

Stone shared the honor with Blues tennis player Andrea Gu, a three-time All-American.

Robert Colton, a Whitman men’s basketball star, received the R.V. Borleske Award, which is given to the school’s top male athlete.

The winners receive a plaque, while their names are added to a display in the athletic department’s Hall of Fame.

The awards are named for a couple who arrived on campus in 1915, then had a huge impact on the growth of the school.

Raymond Borleske, a former Whitman football and baseball player, became a long-time coach, while Mignon Borleske taught dance and women’s education classes at the school for nearly 40 years.

Stone, a 2016 CHS grad, became a starter for the Blues midway through her freshman season, and rarely left the court after that.

She finished with the most starts (92) in program history, and she and fellow seniors Mady Burdett, Lily Gustafson, Natalie Whitesel, and Katie Stahl compiled a 94-20 record during their time in Walla Walla.

That was the most wins for a graduating class in the long and prestigious history of Whitman women’s basketball.

Their success included three trips to the NCAA D-III national tourney, and Whitman was hours away from playing in the Sweet 16 at this year’s event when COVID-19 shut down collegiate athletics.

Stone finished her run in a Blues uniform with 1,337 points and 837 rebounds.

She was named the Northwest Conference MVP as a senior, was selected for the Beyond Sports Women’s Collegiate All-Star Game, and received All-Region and All-American honors.

When she wasn’t excelling on the hardwood, Stone participated in the Whitman College mentor program, was an ACE representative, and served as a member of the Whitman Elementary School Science Night Committee.

Using her time well, Coupeville’s progeny was also a presenter at the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission, while obtaining multiple internships.

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Coupeville’s Makana Stone had a very-successful four-year run as a college basketball player. (Photo property Whitman Athletic Department)

Whitman College kicked off its inaugural Senior Awards Series for athletics Wednesday, and the first honor had a Coupeville connection.

The Blues women’s basketball squad, led by former Wolf Makana Stone, was tabbed as the winner of the George Ball Award.

That honor is awarded to one team which best “represents the mission of Whitman College and the athletics department and that demonstrates one or more of the ideals of sportsmanship, including fairness, civility, honesty, respect, and responsibility.”

Stone and Co. went 26-3 this season, won the Northwest Conference regular season crown with a 15-1 mark, and were preparing to play in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA D-III tourney when the COVID-19 pandemic closed down college sports.

Coupeville’s progeny ended her four-year run in Walla Walla by being named league MVP, followed by notching All-Region and All-American honors.

Whitman will continue to hand out awards in virtual ceremonies each day through May 26.

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Makana Stone, here with mom Eileen, continues to rake in college basketball honors. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Coupeville’s Makana Stone ends her college career as one of the best basketball players in the country.

The former Wolf, now a senior at Whitman College, was one of 25 players honored Tuesday when the D3hoops.com All-American teams were announced.

Already tabbed as the Northwest Conference Player of the Year and a First-Team All-West Region pick, Stone was one of five players to receive Honorable Mention status.

Erica DeCandido of Tufts University (Massachusetts) was selected as the NCAA D-III national player of the year.

Berea College (Kentucky) freshman Aaliyah Hampton was tabbed as Rookie of the Year, while Brian Morehouse, who led Hope College (Michigan) to an undefeated season, was named Coach of the Year.

The only West Coast player honored, Stone averaged 15.1 points and 8.3 rebounds a night as Whitman went 26-3 this season.

She collected 409 points, 225 rebounds, 37 assists, 26 steals, and 26 blocks, while shooting 166-316 (52.5%) from the floor and 74-96 (77.1%) from the free-throw line.

The Blues won their first two games in the NCAA tourney, and were hours away from playing in the Sweet 16 when the season was prematurely ended by the coronavirus.

During her four years as a Blue, Stone played in 110 games, including making a program-record 92 starts.

She finished as the #5 scorer (1,337 points) and #2 rebounder (837 caroms) in Whitman women’s basketball history.

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Makana Stone received another major college basketball award Tuesday afternoon. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Her basketball season ended prematurely, but she continues to be showered in awards.

Coupeville grad Makana Stone, already honored as the Northwest Conference Player of the Year, was named Tuesday to the D3hoops.com West Region First Team.

The Whitman College senior, who averaged 15.1 points and 8.3 rebounds, joins Emma Gerdes of Wartburg, Caitlin Navratil of Nebraska Wesleyan, Taite Anderson of Bethel, and Hanna Geistfeld of Bethany Lutheran.

Two other NWC players, Jamie Lange of Puget Sound and Kory Oleson of Linfield, earned Third Team honors.

Stone collected 409 points, 225 rebounds, 37 assists, 26 steals, and 26 blocks, while shooting 166-316 (52.5%) from the floor and 74-96 (77.1%) from the free-throw line this season.

During her four years as a Blue, the former Wolf star played in 110 games, including making a program-record 92 starts.

She finished as the #5 scorer (1,337 points) and #2 rebounder (837 caroms) in Whitman women’s basketball history.

Sparked by the play of Stone and teammates such as Mady Burdett, Whitman went 26-3, won its first regular-season title since 2014, and opened the NCAA tourney with back-to-back wins.

The Blues were in Maine preparing to play Oglethorpe University in the Sweet 16 when the remainder of the season was cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.

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CHS grad Sarah Wright was off to a strong start as a college softball player.

Their seasons have ended too soon.

Seven Coupeville High School grads (and one Oak Harbor alumni whose mom is my former co-worker) saw spring college sports seasons prematurely end.

With most of the nation shutting down athletic events at every level as part of the fight to curtail the spread of the novel coronavirus, it’s the new reality.

The status of each:


Ally Roberts – Senior
Equestrian – Western Washington University


After winning a regional championship in Advanced Western Horsemanship, she was set to compete in the national semifinals in West Virginia later this month.

A top-two finish there would have sent her on to nationals.

That’s no longer the case, though, with both postseason events now scrubbed from the schedule.

“Really sucks, that’s for sure,” Roberts said. “But just happy with how the season went for my team and I.”


Danny Conlisk – Freshman
Track and Field – South Dakota School of Mines and Technology


After a successful spin around the track during indoor season, the two-time state champ was on his way to the outdoor season, but it’s been cancelled.

A statement released Friday by the NCAA indicates all student/athletes competing in spring sports will be granted an additional season/semester of eligibility.


Sarah Wright – Freshman
Softball – Sewanee: The University of the South


Like Conlisk, the former Wolf star will be granted a do-over, even though she and her diamond teammates had played 40% of their schedule.

Sewanee was 2-14 on the season when the rest of its 40-game season was scrubbed.

Wright was in the top three on her team in eight offensive categories:

.244 batting average (#2)
41 at bats (#3)
10 hits (#2)
2 home runs (#1)
7 RBI (#1)
16 total bases (#2)
.390 slugging percentage (#2)
.311 on base percentage (#3)

She also had a .915 fielding percentage as Sewanee’s catcher, with 39 putouts and four assists.


Makana Stone – Senior
Basketball – Whitman College


The Blues were in Brunswick, Maine preparing to play Friday in the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA national championships, but never got the chance when the tourney was cancelled.

Whitman finished a very-successful season at 26-3, with Stone, the Northwest Conference Player of the Year, having also been selected to play in the Beyond Sports Women’s Collegiate All-Star Game.

That game, featuring the best D-III players in the country, was set for March 21, but has also been cancelled.

Stone closed her senior season with 409 points, 225 rebounds, 37 assists, 26 steals, and 26 blocks, while shooting 166-316 (52.5%) from the floor and 74-96 (77.1%) from the free-throw line.

During her four years as a Blue, the former Wolf star played in 110 games, including making a program-record 92 starts.

She finishes as the #5 scorer (1,337 points) and #2 rebounder (837 caroms) in Whitman women’s basketball history.


CJ Smith – Sophomore
Hunter Smith – Sophomore
James Besaw – Freshman
Joey Lippo – Freshman
Baseball – Green River College


The one sport where some hope lingers.

The Northwest Athletic Conference has chosen, so far, to cancel all games through April 13.

Green River, which is 3-4, has had 19 games scrubbed, though 16 remain, for now, on the schedule.

At the time of the shutdown, Hunter Smith was hitting .333 with eight hits (including a pair of doubles), seven walks, five runs, and two RBI.

Besaw is also hitting at a .333 clip, with five hits, while playing error-free ball at first base for the Gators.

CJ Smith is 1-0 in two games as a relief pitcher, having tossed a team-high 7.1 innings while holding opposing batters to a .125 batting average.

The CHS grad has faced 24 batters, and the only other Green River pitcher with a better mark has only squared off with three rivals.

Lippo hasn’t been given much to do at the plate yet, but is playing error-free ball in the outfield, including a strong throw to Hunter Smith to help nail a wayward runner.

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