With help from coaches, fans, media and local sports historians, Scorebook Live has put together its lists of the best athletes — male and female — to emerge from every county in the state of Washington. We looked back as far as the turn of the 20th century, and we examined the totality of each athletes’ career, not only what they did in high school.
As comprehensive as our lists are, we also want to hear your opinions. We have included polls where you can vote for the best male and female athletes by county. You can also leave your comments below or hit us up on Twitter @sblivewa.
From Milena Flores to Rosalynn Sumners, Snohomish County has produced several world-class female athletes. Take a look at Scorebook Live’s list of the top female athletes to ever come out of Snohomish County and cast your vote in the poll.
BEST FEMALE ATHLETES IN SNOHOMISH COUNTY HISTORY
SHERRON (WALKER) BOYEA
High School: Everett (class of 1975)
Sports: Track and field, racquetball
Notable Stats: Boyea holds the second-oldest prep girls track and field record in Washington with her mark of 21 feet, 3 1/4 inches in the long jump. In fact, she is the only in-state girl to ever soar past 21 feet.
With her naturally-springy legs, Boyea could run fast, jump high – and certainly leap far as the county’s only girl to every make a U.S. Olympic women’s track and field team.
Everywhere she went, she set records – first at Everett with her then-1975 national high school record mark (21-3 1/4), set at an international meet in Russia. She is still ranked in the top 10 nationally today, and is still one of only two girls ever to win four consecutive state long jump championships (1972-75).
At Seattle Pacific, set set an all-time best at 21-8 3/4 – and competed in the 1976 Olympics in Montreal, placing 14th. She also set the long jump record after transferring to Long Beach State.
After retiring from track, Boyea became a nationally age-group ranked racquetball player in California.
High School: Snohomish (class of 1996)
Sports: Basketball, soccer
Notable Stats: A three-year starting point guard at Stanford, Flores ranks No. 3 all-time in career assists (644). Her 7.3-assist-per-game average in 1998-99 is second all-time.
So how could Snohomish County’s most dominant girls basketball player not be a scorer? It is simple. It was floor vision.
Flores was an extraordinary off-the-dribble playmaker as a passer and ball-handler at Snohomish, and was selected as one of the top 20 Washington high school basketball players of the 20th century by the Seattle Times.
She was an all-Pac-10 first-team player at Stanford without ever averaging in double figures in scoring. She also became the first player in conference history to lead a team to three consecutive league titles.
Flores had a brief career in the WNBA with the expansion Miami Sol (2000-2001) before getting into coaching at the NCAA Division I level.
ANNE (QUAST) SANDER
High School: Marysville (class of 1955)
Notable Stats: High-quality longevity? Sander had it, becoming the youngest girl at the time (at age 14 in 1952) to ever qualify for match play at a U.S. Women’s Amateur in 1952, then do the same as one of the oldest at age 65 in 2002.
Sander was part of a troop of elite Washington female golfers in the 1950s who all emerged on the national stage at the same time. But this slight-of-built star was different. She exclusively played amateur golf.
Sander won regional women’s tournaments as a youth, but she started dominating nationally when she arrived at Stanford, capturing the first of three U.S. Women’s Amateur title in 1958.
Three years later, she made history – posting the biggest U.S. Women’s Amateur championship margin of victory with a 14-and-13 win over Phyllis Preuss at Tacoma Country and Golf Club.
In all, Sander won seven USGA championships, which only ranks behind Bobby Jones and Tiger Woods (nine), and Jack Nicklaus and fellow in-state standout JoAnne Carner (eight).
High School: Meadowdale (class of 1982)
Sport: Figure skating
Notable Stats: In a five-year span (1980-84), Sumners was a World Junior figure-skating champion, won three consecutive U.S. titles, captured a world championship and claimed a silver medal at the 1984 Winter Olympics.
Not only is Sumners easily Snohomish County’s most visible female athlete ever, she has the coolest nickmae, too – “The Wizard of Roz.”
That is because not only was she a technically-efficient skater on the ice, her routine artistry was considered the best in the world in the early part of the decade of figure skating.
Sumners was known as a big-competition performer, and entered the 1984 Olympics as not only the clear American threat, but the overall favorite. But she narrowly lost to East German star Katarina Witt on the final day for the gold medal, instead taking second-place silver.
After the Olympics, she turned professional – and toured with other greats on the popular “Disney on Ice” and “Stars on Ice” circuits.
(Rosalynn Sumners cover photo by John Mathew Smith)
Vicki (Borsheim) Beskind, Cascade of Everett (track and field) – Went from UW walk-on to All-American (and Olympic Trials) in high jump (6-4).
Kayla Burt, Arlington (basketball) – First Snohomish County prep girl to break 2,000-point barrier; her UW career was cut short due by heart attack.
Whitney Hooks, Cascade of Everett (track and field) – Only shot putter to win four 4A titles; her 51-1 1/4 mark is No. 2 all-time in Washington.
Sarah Jones, Stanwood (rowing, swimming) – Two-time Olympian in rowing (2000, 2004) was stalwart on U.S. national team (1997-2004).
Jo Metzger-Levin, Everett (basketball, volleyball, softball) – Earned 12 letters in high school, and went on to set 15 WWU records in basketball.
Brenda (Dobbelaar) Morris, Edmonds (softball, soccer basketball) – All-Wesco performer in all three sports led PLU to 1992 NAIA softball title.
Theresa (Wagner) Romagnolo, Lakeside (soccer, tennis) – Edmonds native tallied 120 goals in high school, and is No. 2 at UW in points (80).
Brooke Whitney, Bothell (hockey, softball) – Snohomish native was 2002 Patty Kazmaier Award winner as women’s top collegiate hockey player.