University of Washington Middle Kara Bajema.
PHOTO: Courtesy of USA Volleyball/Bill Kauffman.
Kara Bajema Returning to Lynden Christian with UW Volleyball
May 31, 2019
- Doug Lange Bellingham
Lynden Christian will welcome back one of their top athletes this weekend in an international volleyball showdown. Kara Bajema and the University of Washington volleyball squad will play the Canadian National Team Saturday in a spring league matchup at LCHS.
Bajema, who is heading into her senior season with the Huskies, is one of the most decorated athletes in Lynden Christian history. She led LC to 1A state volleyball titles as a junior and a senior while earning back-to-back Northwest Conference MVP honors. The 6-foot-2 standout also lettered four years in basketball. She won state championships with the Lyncs in 2014 and 2016, while being named state MVP as a sophomore and a senior.
Lynden Christian volleyball coach Kim Grycel set up the match after getting a phone call request from Washington head coach Keegan Cooke. in an interview with TDLN, Grycel sounded excited to have Bajema back on the court where she started.
"We are the state champs this year, so we have the ball again and she was on the team that got us the first and second ones. So we're going to get some pictures of her in her husky uniform on our court with the ball," said Grycel. "Just excited to have the whole team there and the opportunity to watch the Canadian National team."
The Lyncs won their 3rd state championship last November with a straight sets victory over Charles Wright Academy in the title game.
Coming home and giving back to the LC program is nothing new for Bajema.
"Kara comes back every summer and helps at camp with little kids and with our high school camps so she's just such a big part of our program," said Grycel. "The Huskies are on television, so we can watch. She's really just promoted the game of volleyball itself and kind of put Lynden Christian volleyball on the map here and got us going and just continued that legacy at the University of Washington."
Washington volleyball finished 20-and-13 last year advancing to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament. Bajema shined during her junior campaign, garnering her first All-America honor as a third team pick by the American Volleyball Coaches Association. The Dawgs' Outside Hitter was also named to the All-Pac-12 and AVCA All-Region Teams.
Bajema has also been named to the U.S. Women's Collegiate National Team World University Games roster. The team will compete in the World University Games in Napoli, Italy. Preliminary round matches will be played July 4th-11th, followed by the semifinals on July 12th and medal-round matches on July 13th.
Saturday's event is free of charge with the doors opening at 1:30pm and the match beginning at 2:00pm.
- Doug Lange