Hopewell's Shatori Walker-Kimbrough always has had a team-first mentality, but her individual scoring ability has led her to a significant career milestone.
After scoring 25 points Thursday night in Hopewell's 56-45 victory against Ambridge, she now has 2,013 career points. With that accomplishment, she joins an elite group of former WPIAL girls basketball players.
"It means a lot to me, but I don't really think about the points," she said. "I try to stay focused on our team goals."
"It's a great accomplishment from a kid of her ability," Hopewell coach Jeff Homziak said. "It's a pretty impressive list when you see all the players who have scored 2,000 career points in Pennsylvania. They've gone on to do great things, whether it be in college, WNBA or overseas."
Walker-Kimbrough is a rare athlete. It's difficult to find a female athlete who has been recruited by Division I colleges in two sports -- basketball and volleyball. At 5 feet 11, many schools wanted her to play volleyball, as she showed her dominance helping the Vikings capture a WPIAL Class AA title in 2011.
But Walker-Kimbrough's best sport is basketball. She has been a two-time Associated Press All-State selection and is well on her way to achieving that honor a third time.
Walker-Kimbrough had led Hopewell to a 10-1 record before Thursday while averaging a team-high 27 points per game and hoping to carry her team back into the postseason and another WPIAL championship run.
"I know I just have to work harder and harder every time I work in the gym to reach our team goals," she said.
She ended last season with one of the best postseasons in WPIAL history, averaging 31.5 points in four games. Then, in the WPIAL Class AAA final, she showed why she was one of the best players in the state.
She had one of the top championship-game performances in WPIAL history, scoring 35 points (including a 16-for-16 effort from the free-throw line), 13 rebounds and five blocked shots in a 50-34 victory against South Park last March.
But Walker-Kimbrough knows she still has to keep working to reach her main goal -- winning a state championship.
"Just looking at our past seasons and how we ended, I always want to continue to work and learn from the past experiences and use that to get to my goal, which is winning the state championship," Walker-Kimbrough said.
Walker-Kimbrough's scoring ability always has been known around the district, but Hom-ziak credits her unselfish play as one of her best attributes.
"She does everything on our team, but she is very unselfish. She loves to see other players on the team do well and she loves getting an assist just as much as she does scoring a basket," Homziak said.
When you ask Walker-Kimbrough who her biggest inspiration is, she quickly responds that the person might not have been an athlete, but always brings the best out of her.
"It's definitely my mother," Walker-Kimbrough said. "She has been there every step of the way. Even when I played sports that I wasn't good at, she always was there to cheer me on."
Walker-Kimbrough is rated as one of the top 100 high school players in the country and will be attending the University of Maryland next year on a basketball scholarship. The Terrapins are ranked No. 10 in the latest Associated Press poll.
"I see a kid who has the attitude who never wants to lose at anything," Homziak said. "She has the drive to be very successful."
Girls WPIAL and City League players with 2,000 or more career points
Name, School (Senior Year) Points
Gina Naccarato, Monessen (1996) 3,364
Charel Allen, Monessen (2004) 3,110
Brooke Stewart, East Allegheny (1999) 3,055
Jess Strom, Steel Valley (2001) 2,840
Kamela Gissendanner, Clairton (2003) 2,703
Swin Cash, McKeesport (1998) 2,678
Carrie Bordas, Aliquippa (1990) 2,658
Cindy Dallas, Schenley (1998) 2,564
Maude Searcy, Wilkinsburg (1990) 2,541
Tanisha Wright, West Mifflin (2001) 2,477
Loui Hall, Albert Gallatin (2003) 2,440
Anne Malkowiak, Ellwood City (1989) 2,370
Vanessa Abel, Southmoreland (2007) 2,327
Cindy Davies, Indiana (1980) 2,322
Cathy Torchia, St. Francis (1989) 2,284
Katie Bulger, Oakland Catholic (2000) 2,282
Shannon Davis, Sacred Heart (1989) 2,275
Lizzie Suwala, Ford City (2005) 2,266
Kacy O?Brien, Carlynton (2001) 2,238
Beth Seidl, Mount Alvernia (1970) 2,197
Bonnie Rimkus, Carlynton (1990) 2,192
Carmen Bruce, Schenley (2002) 2,175
Kris Sebastian, Monaca (1990) 2,140
Lorri Johnson, New Castle (1986) 2,110
Wanda Holloway, Sharon (1980) 2,106
Kelly Dee, Steel Valley (1990) 2,103
Jen Sobota, Latrobe (1999) 2,093
Mandy West, Upper St. Clair (1995) 2,089
Val Zona, Blackhawk/Seneca Valley (1998)2,083
Amy Johns, McKeesport (2006) 2,067
Jocelyn Chandler, Uniontown (2004) 2,048
Meg Bulger, Oakland Catholic (2003) 2,044
Mona Gaffney, Aliquippa (1990) 2,038
Kameico Robison, Clairton (1999) 2,031
Kelly Morda, Ford City (1998) 2,020
Danielle Dawson, Greensburg Salem (2002)2,018
Shatori Walker-Kimbrough, Hopewell (2013)2,013
Eddy Montalvo: email@example.com. First Published January 11, 2013 5:00 AM