'Outstanding Three-Sport Athlete' Bella Kansala
The Sandy Post has voted Sandy High senior Isabella Kansala as its 2018-19 'Outstanding Three-Sport Athlete.'
Kansala led the Sandy girls basketball team on both ends of the floor, ranking fourth on the Mount Hood Conference scoring list at 11.9 points per game, while also setting the school record for steals in a season.
"She was a huge piece of our team — her defense was unreal," former Sandy girls basketball coach Nechele Bradshaw said. "She is fast and she goes 100 percent all of the time."
"I've always been really good at defense and being fast always helps," Kansala said. "Running down someone and catching them is always satisfying."
Swatting balls from behind paid off on the basketball court, but that's not the only place she chased people down.
Kansala showed off that skill on the track never more so than this year's district meet where she overtook Barlow's Macy McKenney in her last couple strides to earn a spot to state in the 800 meters.
"The 800 is perfect for me. It's in the middle of a sprint and a distance race," Kansala said. "If I hit the split time that I want, I definitely know I have a good time going."
She also represented the Pioneers in the 1,500.
"It's been fun to watch her develop her competitiveness," Sandy track coach Anouxa Vixathep said. "She's always a closer. She knows how to finish a race."
She also knows how to race from the front of the pack, often times taking off as the pace-setter and holding her spot.
On the cross country trails she finished second at the Mount Hood Conference championships — one of four girls to break the 20-minute barrier for the 5K distance.
"I'm just a competitive person, and I'm motivated by results," Kansala said. "That gives me a reason to stay organized whether it's keeping my grades up or racing."
Kansala will continue her racing career at Lane Community College in Eugene.
"She is very disciplined, and she knows how to change and adapt," Vixathep said. "That has helped her in high school and will continue to serve her well into college."
Other notables …
Colby Carson — football, basketball and baseball
Nolan Johns — water polo, basketball and tennis
This story appears in our June 12, print edition.