Jaylene Stam has always wondered what it would have been like had she been at one of the bigger schools, playing with and against the top high school players.
She will soon find out after earning an invitation to next week’s B.C. girls high school basketball all-star game.
The 17-year-old point guard for the Credo Christian Kodiaks is one of the 21 Grade 12 players selected to take part in the game on Saturday, April 16 at the Langley Events Centre.
The game features players from the 1A, 2A and 3A ranks.
“It is an honour, definitely, to be chosen (especially) being at one of the small Single A schools,” Stam said.
There is no denying Stam’s athleticism — she won the Kodiaks’ Grade 8 female athlete of the year award, and since Grade 9, has won the school’s top female athlete award for three years running.
And her involvement in sports — she also plays soccer and volleyball — comes through family.
“My parents were athletic and it rubbed off on us,” she said, about older brother Devon and herself.
In elementary school, Stam used to watch her mom play soccer in a church co-ed league.
And every summer, her mom would run a week-long basketball camp.
“Ever since Grade 3, I have been going to her basketball camps for a week every summer,” Stam said.
“She is definitely a point guard — a real team leader and a great ball handler,” said Credo’s Sharon Allison, who has coached Stam since Grade 8.
“She was a player that always wanted to get better and she was passionate about the sport of basketball.
“She played at a high level individually but also made her teammates better in the process.”
This past season, Stam averaged 14 points, eight rebounds and four assists. And at the provincial championships — where the Kodiaks won the bronze medal — she led the team with 22.5 points per game and was named a first team all-star.
“(Jaylene) always had the drive to succeed and work hard. I have seen her develop her mental toughness over the years, which has made her the player she is today,” Allison said.
“What makes her good is she has, of course, the obvious — the shooting, the dribbling, the passing and quickness — but those other qualities: knowledge of the game, toughness and leadership.”
And this may not be the last time Stam hits the hardwood at an elite level.
Scheduled to attend Douglas College in the fall — she plans on studying the therapeutic recreation program — Stam is hoping to continue her basketball career at the college level with the Royals program.