Former Kitsap stars unite at Western Washington

Recent Kitsap County basketball stars will look to place their footprints into a historic Western Washington University Women’s Basketball program.

The Vikings are coming off two of its top seasons in program history.

In the 2021-22 season, WWU won its sixth regular season conference title and reached the NCAA Division 2 National Championship before falling short. Last season, the Vikings won the regular season and conference tournament. In addition, they reached the regionals before falling.

Bainbridge’s Olivia Wikstrom and Kingston’s Ellee Brockman look to make history while competing for WWU. Wikstrom transferred from Utah State after visiting the Vikings in March.

“I’m really excited to come home and have this opportunity to play in front of my family and play on such a really good program with a great history of success,” Wikstrom said.

Wikstrom played at Bainbridge High until she graduated in 2020. She holds the school record for career points (1,796), steals (263), points in a game (44), steals in a game (12), points in a season (597) and average points per game (26).

At Utah State, she averaged 7.3 points and 3.4 rebounds per game as a 6-foot-1 guard. “After the first season, the entire team and coaching staff left so I was one of the only returners going into my second year,” she said. “We weren’t very successful so I felt like it was time to make the change.”

Wikstrom decided on WWU as a junior so she can “play on a program that has history and success, and it was close to home, which was a big draw.”

In addition, she has played alongside or against several of her new teammates, including Brockman. “Playing with kids that are from the same area, same gyms and tournaments gives us commonalities and allows us to buy in,” Wikstrom said. “We all want to win together.”

Wikstrom and Brockman recently got a house together in Bellingham and will be roommates. “Hearing [Olivia] is coming to Western is awesome because we both came from the same area,” Brockman said.

She believes the two Kitsap natives can help each other flourish. “It will be really nice to learn more from what she has experienced from where she has played,” Brockman said. “I can also be someone she can talk to when there is any confusion or just be here for guidance.”

Brockman is a redshirt freshman guard standing at 6 feet. She was the 2022 Olympic League MVP and All-State Team 2A as a senior. She averaged 20 points, 14 rebounds, 4 assists, 2.4 steals and 1.6 blocks per game in her senior season.

Brockman chose the Vikings because: “It’s a really tight-knit community. I went to their camp the summer before my sophomore year in high school, and I got a good feel. I liked the location, the team atmosphere and coaches.”

Since Brockman tore her ACL last season, she was unable to suit up. “I was being supportive anyway possible,” Brockman said. “It was a big impact for everyone being there for each other and it helps a lot.”