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Kamber Backman (1991) - Basketball, Soccer, Track

Kamber Backman
HoF Individual
Induction Year

Kamber has become noted in three different sports in her career: basketball, soccer, and track.  She found that R.A. Long had a weakness in the goalkeeper position and felt that she could help the team most in that spot. In her freshman year she posted 288 saves, 42 of them in one game against Hudson’s Bay, and went on to be elected to the first team all-conference as goalkeeper. Kamber continued on to be elected her team captain, MVP, and voted most inspirational player.  By the time she became a senior they had turned the soccer program around and even earned a spot in the district playoffs.
The feeling that “we can do it!” carried over into her basketball season. Basketball was her favorite and it showed. In that year, she set the record for assists in a single game (9) and 62 for the season. In her junior year and senior years, she led the team to two consecutive state births.  She led the team in steals, assists, rebounds, field goals, free throws and team points. With her attitude being very positive, she was elected team captain and MVP for her final two years at R.A. Long setting all kinds of records along the way. She was picked as a first team All–League, selected to on the Daily News All Area Team, and was voted Player of the Year. She was given a basketball scholarship to Western Washington but she feared that a college schedule would be too difficult for her blister- prone feet.
The third varsity sport was her participation in track and field.  She lettered Varsity level all four years.  She found much success in the throwing events of the shot-put and javelin, but also competed in the mile run, 4x400 relay. Coach would put Kamber wherever they needed points for the team. In her final three years in high school, Kamber made three state track meet appearances in the javelin, shot put and 4x400 relay.  She lost the shotput title by1/2 inch, but won the javelin with a distance of 143’1”.  She was offered several track scholarships, and in the end, she chose to attend the University Wyoming. In her freshman year she set the school record in the javelin and qualified for the national track meet.  She was then invited to compete in the Drake Relays, and several meets around the country.  Kamber also performed well in the next couple of years. She set school records, earned Athlete of the Year awards, and still holds four records in the conference.
Kamber qualified and earned a spot on the USA Track and Field team. She was invited to the San Diego Olympic qualifying event, threw a qualifying spot which set a new record for the University of Wyoming.  She qualified for the Olympic team, but had a medical problem that prevented her from participating. She had two bulging discs in her back and was told that she would probably need surgery, and that her quality of life would suffer.  Tough decision for such and outstanding athlete!
At the U of Wyoming, which turned out to be a perfect fit, she earned her BA Degree in Education, taught for three years in Wyoming, and returned to Longview where she has been teaching at Monticello Middle School for 16 years. She has shared knowledge and skills with young athletes, coaching soccer, basketball, and track for both boys and girls.  Needless to say, Kamber has been recognized for many years as one of the most accomplished athletes to have attended R.A. Long High School.