July 3, 2008 · Updated 6:01 PM
"Sheena Darling and Garrett Stone were recognized as the Oak Harbor High School female and male Athletes of the Year, respectively, last Friday. The award honors athletic accomplishments and leadership and is voted on by all head coaches.Darling ran track for four years and also played two years of soccer. As a senior, she was selected as a 4A WesCo first team forward in soccer. She set a school record with four assists in a single game, a contest in which she also scored three goals. Darling also tied the school record for assists in a season with eight. She's a team player and natural leader who listens well and wants to succeed, Oak Harbor soccer coach Guy Barber said. She was a pleasure to coach and I'll miss her a lot. She has all the attributes that a coach would want in an athlete.In track, Darling was a state qualifier in the 300 meter hurdles and was a member of the 4x100 relay team. She'd always been a good track athlete, but her success this season was very surprising, Oak Harbor track coach Glenn Strachan said. After setting a personal best on her way to finishing second in the 4A WesCo League meet, Darling followed that with a third place showing in the district meet and earned a berth at state.Darling's success stems from her attitude and work ethic, which was recognized by both her coaches and teammates.She set a standard during practice for work ethic that carried over into games, said Barber. The other girls really looked to her to set the tempo and her effort alone brought the team to a new level. It's unfortunate that we only had her for two years.From the beginning of the year, she stepped in and took up a leadership role without even being asked, said Strachan. She was a joy, really, to coach. She was sort of like an assistant coach out on the track because she took time out of her own schedule to help the other athletes. She's a very unselfish person.Stone played four years of basketball and baseball for Oak Harbor, as well as two years of football. This year the 4A Western Conference recognized him as an all-star in each sport, a testimony to his ability and versatility. His athleticism - he's strong, quick, and big - makes him good at every sport he does, Oak Harbor baseball coach Jim Waller said. In baseball, Stone maintained a .321 career batting average and tied a school record for triples in a game. He was also a 4A WesCo second team selection as an outfielder for the second year in a row. He could have played college baseball, said Waller.Stone might also have had a bright future in football. A WesCo first team selection on defense and a second team selection on offense, as a senior he led Oak Harbor in interceptions and was second in tackles as a safety and wide receiver. He's very athletic and able to make tackles on big fullbacks and able to cover a wide receiver deep in the secondary, Oak Harbor football coach Dave Ward said, commenting on Stone's versatility. It would be interesting to see what he could have done had he played for a full four years. He could play offense or defense on a college team if he was interested.However, despite his accomplishments on the diamond and the gridiron, Stone prefers life on the hardwood. As a captain of the Oak Harbor basketball team, he led the team in scoring and assists for the second season in a row and was named a WesCo honorable mention. Stone will attend Seattle Pacific University next fall where he hopes to play basketball as a walk-on and join his brother, Brannon. But in spite of Stone's gifts as an athlete, his coaches as well as those who have played with him also recognize his character.Garrett was one of the kids I felt was really respected on the team, Oak Harbor basketball coach Frank Hunter said. He wanted to win more than anybody.He's a dedicated, hard-working athlete who doesn't complain, Waller said. He's a good citizen and good student, the kind of guy coaches would like to have a whole team of."