My heart belongs to the game of basketball.
I started playing in fourth grade in a church league in the suburbs of North Atlanta. Yes, Atlanta, Georgia. I played there until I was old enough to play for my school, and played all the way through high school.
My name is Sierra Webster and, Herald and News readers, I am your new high school sportswriter.
I have a lot to learn about this community, its schools and sports teams and rivalries--but I’m young, full of energy and would like ideas to help meet this community’s sports needs.
I fell in love with sportswriting in college because I felt it was a place to tell stories that matter and that reach across and along society’s biggest concerns — competition, friendship, teamwork, race, gender, class.
In just a couple days, I can already tell that the Klamath Basin is a dynamic and diverse community that cares deeply about its high school teams, and the stories of its stars.
I hope to meet that passion in my coverage and am always open to hearing ways that I can be better.
While I was raised in the South, I have a deep connection to this region of the country. My mom’s family lives in Ashland (I even have a cousin in Klamath Falls), and I’ve visited the Rogue Valley since I was an infant.
The summer before my senior year of high school, I moved with my family from Atlanta, where I was born and had lived my whole life, to Ashland. I joined the Ashland basketball team and was starting games for the Grizzlies by the time we started league play.
When I went to college at the University of Oregon, I thought my relationship with basketball was over. I played pick-up every now and then at the rec center or with friends at weekend conferences, but my decade-long love seemed like it was coming to a heartbreaking end.
Until, that is, I was given the chance to cover the University of Oregon women’s basketball team.
The gig, which in a lot of ways launched my pursuit of sportswriting, put me back in the world of women’s basketball.
For two years, I followed the calculated sensation that is Sabrina Ionescu and her Ducks, covering nearly every home game I could and following the team all the way to Tampa for the Final Four earlier this year.
I spent the summer back in Atlanta interning with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution where I covered road races, baseball, football, soccer and, of course, women’s basketball, covering the city’s WNBA team, the Dream.
But, as my internship ended, I knew I wanted to be back on the west coast, close to my family and in the state that has stolen my heart.
I’m excited to be back in Southern Oregon, excited to learn and excited to bring Herald and News readers the very best sports coverage I can. If you have any story ideas, tips or just want to introduce yourself, I’d love to hear from you.
My inbox is always open.
Sierra Webster is a Herald and News sportswriter. She can be reached at 541-885-4440, or at email@example.com.