For Avery Dykstra, the newest signee for Western women's basketball, joining a Western athletics team has become a family tradition.
Her uncles Greg Dykstra, football; Grant Dykstra, basketball; and aunts Kelly (Colard) Dykstra, basketball; and Devin Koenen, basketball and softball; also played for Western.
Dykstra said she looks forward to carrying on the family tradition and finally having her own time to shine next fall.
“I’ve been going to games for a while," Dykstra said. "I watched my uncle play when I was a little girl. I’ve been in the gym a lot, but it’s kind of fun now that it’s my turn to be on the court instead of in the stands."
Dykstra, a 5-foot-10 point guard for Lynden Christian High School, was instrumental in helping the Lyncs to three top-5 finishes in the Class 1A state basketball championships, including the state title during her sophomore season.
She was also named the 2016-17 Northwest Conference MVP as a junior, averaging 11.2 points, 4.6 assists, 3.3 rebounds and 2.1 steals per game.
Dykstra, a three-sport athlete, will be a four-year starter for the Lyncs' softball team, and also aided in two state championship titles in volleyball.
Dykstra said she is excited to bring her athletic skills and personality into Sam Carver Gymnasium.
“I bring a lot of laughter and joy to my team, but then I also bring a lot of intensity and focus,” Dykstra said. “I like to work hard.”
Western women’s basketball coach Carmen Dolfo is optimistic for what Dykstra will offer to the team next season.
“We are very excited to welcome Avery to our program," Dolfo said in a press release. "She is an athletic guard that will add a lot to our program on both the offensive and defensive end.”
“I bring a lot of laughter and joy to my team, but then I also bring a lot of intensity and focus. I like to work hard.”
AVERY DYKSTRA, POINT GUARD
Brady Bomber has been Dykstra’s basketball coach for all four years of her high school career and has become one of her greatest supporters.
“Avery is a joy to coach,” Bomber said. “She does all the things that make life easy for a coach. Easy to talk to, easy to communicate with. She works really hard all the time.”
Bomber said she has shown tremendous leadership and responsibility, and has formed lifelong relationships with her current and past teammates.
“She’s done a really nice job leading by example and also being vocal when she needs to be, as far as showing what our expectations are and how to play,” Bomber said.
Bomber is confident she will bring the same leadership, intensity and hard work to the Vikings’ basketball program.
“I think people that watch her play at Western will really enjoy the enthusiasm she brings, whether it's on or off the court,” Bomber said. “People are going to enjoy getting to know her, how hard she competes and how good of a teammate she is.”