Girls Sports Month: A look back at Diana Taurasi in high school | USA TODAY High School Sports

Earlier than Michael Jordan was making Bryon Russell fall with a killer crossover and draining the go forward jumper to win his sixth NBA title with the Chicago Bulls, Jordan was a thin, decided athlete dominating the competitors at Laney Excessive (Wilmington, N.C.).

Earlier than Adrian Peterson was trucking opposing defenses and racking up 2,097 yards in a single season for the Minnesota Vikings, he was shining vivid beneath the Friday evening lights at Palestine Excessive (Palestine, Texas), averaging 12 yards a carry and scoring 32 touchdowns.

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Earlier than any athlete can turn into legendary, they’ve to put their basis in the highschool ranks.

We meet up with a high-profile athlete’s former coach, mentor, member of the family, and many others., and reminisce about their highschool enjoying days; all the things from the best second to the wackiest story.

For Ladies Sports activities Month, I caught up with WNBA star Diana Taurasi’s highschool coach at Don Antoni Lugo (Chino, Calif.) Larry Webster, who’s now retired.

Jason Jordan: What’s your finest reminiscence of Diana on the courtroom again in highschool?

Larry Webster: Effectively, as you possibly can think about that’s a fairly robust one for Diana. It was in all probability throughout her junior yr on the Santa Barbara event. We had a variety of actually good video games there. We truly didn’t even win that one, however I keep in mind her having a number of “Taurasi” moments in that one. She simply dominated a staff that was stuffed with proficient gamers. What you see on the professional degree and what you noticed on the faculty degree is what she’s at all times finished. She’s at all times been dominant. She truly used to follow with the boys’ staff generally. I’d think about she would get one of the best of them too. She was actually good.

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JJ: What’s your finest reminiscence of Diana off the courtroom again then?

LW: Simply how fun-loving and funky she is. There’s part of Diana that’s severe too, however she’s principally fun-loving. There have been a number of expectations on her in highschool and I used to be glad that she received an opportunity to get away to Connecticut and study from Coach (Geno) Auriemma.

Girls Sports Month: A look back at Diana Taurasi in high school | USA TODAY High School Sports

Diana Taurasi (Photograph: Tim Rue, For USA TODAY)

JJ: What had been a few of her different skills away from the hardwood?

LW: I by no means noticed her play, however the phrase was that she was a extremely good soccer participant. They stated she was superior.

JJ: What’s the craziest story you possibly can keep in mind from her recruitment?

LW: When she went to signal her letter-of-intent it wasn’t a really glad day. Her mother didn’t need her to go to Connecticut. She thought she was gonna keep right here and go to UCLA. I undoubtedly do not forget that. However I at all times thought Connecticut was one of the best place for her.

JJ: Do you suppose she may play within the NBA?

LW: No. She’s proficient, there’s little doubt, however Diana is real looking. The dimensions and power of the NBA gamers could be an excessive amount of.

JJ: When it’s all stated and finished is Diana Taurasi a primary poll Corridor of Famer?

LW: Oh indubitably. She’s been so dominant. She’s undoubtedly a Corridor of Famer from day one. In fact!

Right here’s how Diana Taurasi received it finished in highschool.

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Comply with Jason Jordan on Twitter: @JayJayUSATODAY

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