It’s the year of the woman in this year’s Snohomish County Sports Hall of Fame induction class.
The Snohomish County Sports Commission revealed this year’s class late Sunday night, and four of the five athletes being inducted are female.
Tracy Osborn Nelson was a standout soccer player at Cascade High School and the University of Portland in the late 1980s and early 1990s who was a member of the U.S. Youth National Soccer Team from 1990-92. She was a member of the U.S. Amateur national championship team in 1999, and she went on to coach three Northwest Athletic Conference championship teams at Clackamas College in 2004, 2005 and 2007.
Deni Boswell Maxwell, a graduate of Meadowdale High School in 1994, was a three-time NCAA Division II national champion at Seattle Pacific University, winning the all-around national title as a senior while also earning All-American honors on the vault, uneven bars, floor exercise and balance beam.
Karen Church, who graduated from Stanwood High School in 1985, won two high school state titles in the 400 meters and one in the 200 meters before being recruited to compete at the University of Oregon. In 1987 she finished fourth in the 400 at the NCAA Junior Nationals, and in 2004 at age 37 she was top-five in the nation in the masters age group in the 100, 200, 400 and 800.
Janet Kusler was a member of Snohomish High School’s first ever girls basketball team, then attended Washington State University where she was a four-year starter and finished her career as the Cougars’ career leader in points and rebounds. Following college she competed with the AAU SeaBaskets in the early 1980s, helping the team win an AAU national championship.
The fifth athlete being inducted is former University of Washington and Lake Stevens High School graduate Richie Chambers. Chambers was a star football player and a state champion hurdler and wrestler at Lake Stevens before going on to play linebacker for Washington, where he earned Pac-10 honorable mention honors as a senior and played in the 1991 Rose Bowl.
The coach being inducted this year is longtime Snohomish High School track and field coach Charles “Tuck” Gionet. Gionet began his career at Snohomish in 1988 and had teams win state titles in 2001 and 2002.
The team being honored is the 1991 Cascade High School football team, which was coached by Terry Ennis and went on to win the 3A state championship. It was the last Snohomish County high school team to win a 4A or 3A football state title.
The sports contributor being inducted is Warren Larsen, who spent 58 years officiating sports in the county, including baseball, softball, football, basketball and wrestling.
The induction banquet is on Sept. 19 at the Edward D. Hansen Conference Center at Angel of the Winds Arena.