A promise alights

Following family, Kayla Strobel signs a national letter of intent

Kayla Strobel’s competitive spirit attracted the attention of Colorado Northwestern Community College coach Antowin Edwards, and he wrapped up the Bayfield High School senior to a national letter of intent. Strobel will play at the Rangely school next year, keeping a promise she made to herself two years ago. Enlarge photo

Jerry McBride/Durango Herald file photo

Kayla Strobel’s competitive spirit attracted the attention of Colorado Northwestern Community College coach Antowin Edwards, and he wrapped up the Bayfield High School senior to a national letter of intent. Strobel will play at the Rangely school next year, keeping a promise she made to herself two years ago.

BAYFIELD

Kayla Strobel kept her promise.

Two years ago, when her older sister Laurel signed to play junior college volleyball, Bayfield’s Kayla Strobel vowed that she eventually would sign to play basketball in college.

Two years later, she signed.

Her mother, Karen Strobel, and sister Laurel were on hand for the festive signing ceremony at Bayfield High School on Tuesday as were her coaches – current and future.

Bayfield head coach Ronnie Posey and Colorado Northwestern Community College head coach Antowin Edwards joined the celebration.

“I’m very, very excited about the opportunity,” Stobel said. “I definitely remember seeing my sister sign for volleyball, and I was hoping for basketball.”

Strobel’s play and the success of the Bayfield girls basketball team caught the attention of Edwards, who is the head coach at the community college in Rangely.

Phone calls were exchanged. A visit was scheduled.

Strobel liked what she saw.

“The girls seem like they work really hard,” she said of her future Spartans’ teammates. “They all have a passion for the sport. That’s what I was looking for.”

Coach Edwards also left an imposing impression.

“He seemed like the kind of coach I could learn a lot from,” said Strobel, a first-team All-Intermountain League selection for the Wolverines.

Strobel averaged 14 points and six rebounds per game, helping the Wolverines reach the elite eight in Class 3A for the first time in recent history. They finished with a school-record 20 wins and a 20-5 record.

“The thing I really like about her is that she is a competitor,” Edwards said. “She knows how to win. She comes from a winning program, and that’s important.”

He said he picked up on her competitive attitude immediately. But most of all, he said, he likes her scoring.

“She shot the ball well, she handled the ball well, and she’s a better defender than you think she should be,” he said after her workouts in Rangely with other CNCC recruits.

“What I want her to do is shoot the basketball. She shoots it, and that’s what I want her to do. I’m looking for her to be an offensive threat,” he said.

The Spartans, Edwards said, need perimeter scoring.

“She wants to score, and I like that. I want that,” Edwards said of Strobel, who scored more than 20 points several times this season.

“She’s got the green light from me ... a neon green light,” Edwards said.

Then, the Colorado Northwestern coach described her in a word her high school coach often used: fearless.

“I love kids who are fearless, and she is fearless,” Edwards said.

Posey, for his part, is a proud high school coach – proud of his players.

“I’m really proud for Kayla,” Posey said. “I think her biggest attribute is her love of the game. She really loves it.”

Posey said Stobel was an effective leader for the Wolverines. And, Posey said, Strobel often was forced to play out of position against bigger players.

That versatility will help at the next level, he said.

“She has no fear,” Posey said. “She can shoot the ball, and her range is not limited.”

Neither is her competitive drive, according to her high school coach.

Just the sort of drive her junior college coach is counting on.

dstrode@durangoherald.com

The versatile Kayla Strobel played a pair of sports at Bayfield High School – and played both well. Both her basketball and volleyball teams reached the elite eight. Her sister Laurel played college volleyball, and the younger Strobel will play basketball next year at Colorado Northwestern in Rangely. Enlarge photo

Steve Lewis/Durango Herald file photo

The versatile Kayla Strobel played a pair of sports at Bayfield High School – and played both well. Both her basketball and volleyball teams reached the elite eight. Her sister Laurel played college volleyball, and the younger Strobel will play basketball next year at Colorado Northwestern in Rangely.

Bayfield senior Kayla Strobel signed her national letter of intent to attend Colorado Northwestern Community College in Rangely on Tuesday. Colorado Northwestern head coach Antowin Edwards added his signature at the signing ceremony. Bayfield girls basketball coach Ronnie Posey celebrated the occasion with Kayla’s mother, Karen, and sister Laurel. Enlarge photo

Dale Strode/Durango Herald

Bayfield senior Kayla Strobel signed her national letter of intent to attend Colorado Northwestern Community College in Rangely on Tuesday. Colorado Northwestern head coach Antowin Edwards added his signature at the signing ceremony. Bayfield girls basketball coach Ronnie Posey celebrated the occasion with Kayla’s mother, Karen, and sister Laurel.