Storkson Named to WBCA Good Works Team

Submitted by: Kaci Mexico - February 11th, 2016

 

Karlie Storkson ( Photo by Brad Elliott).

Karlie Storkson ( Photo by Brad Elliott).


By Kaci Mexico
February 11, 2016

Senior Karlie Storkson of Lynnwood, Washington was named to the 2016 Allstate WBCA (Women’s Basketball Coaches Association) Good Works Team.

Out of 103 nominations ten student-athletes were chosen for the team; five from NCAA Division I and five from NCAA Divisions II, III and the NAIA. Storkson was the sole NAIA student-athlete to receive this honor.

This distinguished award honors college basketball athletes for their off-the-court accomplishments as they spend their limited free time giving back to their communities and bettering the lives of others all over the world.

“I think honestly that this award is the best award that the WBCA gives,” explained head coach Kirsten Moore, “because it really honors something so much bigger than the game – teaching our student athletes how to be good citizens and how to have a positive impact on their communities. As a Christian college our mission is to serve and shine the love of God to other people so I am really grateful that Karly has led in that way for us for four years.”

“All of her off the court time has been spent giving back to others,” continued Moore, “between two mission trips to Africa in two of her past three summers and her service in the campus community as a leader in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes for the past three years.”

“It is both exciting and fun to receive this honor,” posited Storkson. “I didn’t expect anything like that because I don’t necessarily do the things I do to receive an award of any sort. I am just trying to do what I feel like God has called me to do and that is to serve others – whether that be through FCA or through mission work trying to help those that are less privileged.”

Most recently, Storkson served as a leader in organizing and fundraising for Westmont Women’s Basketball’s mission trip to Africa in the summer of 2015. Since returning from the trip, Storkson and the rest of the team have begun to raise funds to purchase cows to start a dairy in a Ugandan village near Gulu. So far, their efforts have resulted in the purchase of four cows.

Storkson reflected on basketball as a platform for ministry and as a tool for connecting with diverse people in meaningful ways.

“Basketball has been a great mission field for me because it is a way you can connect with people on a different level – you are a team, you are together all the time, you get to do life together and that leaves room for good conversations to happen and opens up doors to be able to invest in people’s lives. I would not have been friends with a lot of people on my team if it wasn’t for basketball, so it has been an incredible opportunity to get to know them. That is also what FCA has been, only broader than just my own team.”

In addition to the Westmont team’s trip to Africa, Storkson participated in a mission trip to Uganda and Rwanda in the summer of 2013 with ERM Rwanda and Beacon of Hope/Pilgrim Africa in Uganda, she served in the Run to Win sports camps which is a sports ministry in the greater Puget Sound area that included camps in underprivileged areas, and volunteered as an assistant coach for the Kings High School girls basketball team in the summers of 2014 and 2015.

“Sports ministry is something that I am super interested in because of our trip to Africa this last summer,” continued Storkson. “Basketball can be used as a connecting point because it is a language that people from totally different backgrounds can both speak – they can become friends and invest in each other’s lives in ways that would not have been possible before.”

Moore continued to reflect on Storkson’s consistent on and off the court leadership throughout her career.

“She is someone who doesn’t really get a lot the credit for basketball stuff,” noted Moore, “but she is someone who from day one has had an unbelievable work ethic and attitude. She is the ultimate team player and the ultimate servant. Her servant leadership is something that I am grateful to have had in our program for the last four years.

“This is an award given to basketball players, but I think she served both our women’s basketball team and our track team. She is someone that always leads by example in doing the right thing.”

In addition to playing on two NAIA semifinal teams and playing on the 2013 National Championship team, Storkson is also a two time NAIA Outdoor Track and Field All-American in the 4 x 400 meter relay. Storkson is currently a team captain for the women’s basketball team and plans on finishing out her college athletics career as a member of the track and field team.

Storkson will graduate in May with a Bachelors of Arts degree in both Religious Studies and Sociology.

Even though it won’t be in a Warrior uniform, Storkson still sees basketball as being a large part of her life and especially in the upcoming year – only this time as a coach.

“Next year, I am going to help coach at my old high school (Kings High School) back in Seattle,” explained Storkson. “It is really exciting that I still get to use that platform.

“I hope to use basketball in the future to impact the world in some sort of way,” continued Storkson. “I really don’t know what that looks like yet but I have a lot of ideas, connections, and really cool and encouraging people in my life so I am excited to see where that goes. I definitely see basketball and sports in general continuing to be a part of my life and how I seek to impact others with my life.”

“I am so thankful for the WBCA and that Karlie is being recognized on a national level,” concluded Coach Moore. “It is about being a student and an athlete, but it is also about being leaders in our community and serving others and she has done that in her four years and I am thrilled that she is representing Westmont college in that way.”