Born and raised in Alabama, Hannah Stephens moved with family to Sequim following her seventh-grade year.
Eventually she acquired the predictable nickname, “Hannah Alabama.”
The Sequim High graduate of 2010 is back in her element as she competes with the University of Alabama’s rowing squad.
Following graduation, it didn’t take long for the former Wolf to pick the Crimson Tide.
“I chose Alabama because I am from Alabama,” Stephens said. “It also had my majors, which are marine science and meteorology.”
Stephens played basketball at Sequim High through her junior year and was an SHS football manager/ball girl for several seasons before moving back to the Southeast.
There, she picked up the sport of rowing.
“I got into rowing because I wanted to be on a team,” Stephens said. “My whole life I have done a sport, so why stop now? Rowing is the most physically demanding sport I have ever done.”
Along with other varsity rowers, Stephens is at practice each morning from 5-7 a.m. and later in the day, from 5-7 p.m.
She said she also enjoys the sport because of the responsibility it puts on each team member.
“I love the fact it is a real team sport,” she said. “There are eight in the boat (and) if one girl messes up, we all mess up.”
Stephens adds, “It is the only college sport at Alabama you can learn in college. I love being a Division I athlete!”
Her father, John Stephens, said that several people have asked Hannah where Sequim is located after they see Sequim listed as her hometown.
“Hannah was noticed by the Alabama rowing staff in the Alabama weight room working out one day,” John Stephens said. “(She) was invited to try out and was the only nonscholarship rower to make the team. She will have a chance next year to earn a scholarship.”
Meets are each Saturday through May.
Zoei Zbaraschuk, a 2010 graduate of Sequim High School, helped the Sonoma State golf squad’s second team to a third-place finish at the SSU Spring Invitational at Foxtail Golf Course in Rohnert Park, Calif., on April 11-12.
Zbaraschuk, a freshman at Sonoma State, shot a 170 overall (86-84).
Sonoma State’s No. 14-ranked first squad took top honors at the invitational at 620 strokes, followed by Cal State East Bay (629), Sonoma State’s second team (694) and Dominican (795).
Zbaraschuk qualified for the state tourney all four years at Sequim, finishing as high as fifth in her senior season.