SEATTLE â€“ The Seattle Sports Commission (SSC) today announced the winners for the 79th Annual MTR Western Sports Star of the Year, the Northwestâ€™s premier celebration of Washington sports. Winners were chosen by formula consisting of fan voting and the Sports Star Committee vote, which is compiled of local sports historians, media and others active in the sports industry. Honorees are selected by the Sports Star Committee.
Sports Story of the Year: Eastlake Little League
The Sports Story of the Year is given to an individual, group of individuals or a team/organization that has positively captured the attention of and inspired the state of Washington. Eastlake from Sammamish staged a dramatic run for the Little League World Series title, gaining a national audience along the way. Coach Rob Chandlerâ€™s team rallied repeatedly to avoid elimination set a record for consecutive hits and finished third in the nation.
Keith Jackson Award: Warren Miller
The Keith Jackson Award is given to a member of the media for excellence in communicating the sports stories of Washington. Warren Millerâ€™s name is synonymous with spectacular skiing and snowboarding movies. As founder of Warren Miller Entertainment, his credits include books, articles and more than 750 films -- crowd pleasers full of jaw-dropping downhill feats and gorgeous scenery.
Seattle Childrenâ€™s Inspirational Youth Award: Zack Lystedt
The Seattle Childrenâ€™s Inspirational Youth Award is given to an inspirational student who inspired us through sport. Zack Lystedt suffered a catastrophic brain injury in 2006 due to multiple concussions as a football player at Tahoma High School. His case led Washington state to pass the Lystedt Law in 2009 to protect athletes who are suspected of having a concussion. Versions of that law are now in effect in 49 states.
Paul Allen Award: Ron Crockett
The Paul Allen Award is given to an individual who has made a significant or compelling contribution to the local community. Ron Crockett kept horse racing alive in western Washington when he built Emerald Downs. In 2013, he was the driving force in raising $50 million for the renovation of Husky Stadium. Heâ€™s also a big-time supporter of Seattle Childrenâ€™s Hospital.
Royal Brougham Legend Award: Bobo Brayton
The Royal Brougham Legend Award was introduced at the 75th Annual Sports Star of the Year. This award is given to an individual for a lifetime of achievement in sports and exemplifies the spirit of Washington. Bobo Brayton went from being Washington State Universityâ€™s first baseball All-American as a shortstop in 1947 to becoming its all-time winningest coach. From 1962 to 1994 his teams won 1,162 games and 21 conference titles and twice reached the College World Series.
Male Sports Star of the Year: Russell Wilson
The Male Sports Star of the Year is given to an amateur male athlete or coach for outstanding sports achievement in the past year or season. Quarterback Russell Wilson set an NFL record for most wins in his first two seasons, maintained one of the leagueâ€™s top passer ratings and led the Seahawks to the NFCâ€™s best win-loss record. He was a strong contender for MVP honors.
Female Sports Star of the Year: Krista Vansant
The Female Sports Star of the Year is given to amateur female athlete or coach for outstanding sports achievement in the past year or season. Junior outside hitter Krista Vansant was Pac-12 Player of the Year after leading the Huskies to the conference championship. She was at her best in the NCAA tournament, showing All-America skills as she boosted UW into the Final Four at KeyArena.
To learn more about the MTR Western Sports Star of the Year, visit www.sportsstaroftheyear.org.