Passion for game drives Stout to succeed

By Ivan Sanders
STAR CORRESPONDENT

   An athlete often is gauged by how tall they are, or the time they might run a certain distance in.
   These qualities do not always give justice to those athletes who play because they have a passion for the sport they participate in.
   Take Kari Stout of the Hampton Lady Bulldogs for an illustration. I would dare say that this young lady's love for the game is nothing shy of heart felt.
   "I don't play basketball because someone else tells me I have to," stated Kari. "I play basketball because I absolutely love the game, and I love playing here at Hampton."
   The Lady Bulldogs love having Kari on their side as well. Stout is a senior who tries to be an example for her fellow teammates by her actions on and off the court.
   " I don't take easy classes, because I want to be prepared for college," commented Stout. "I work hard on my academics and my basketball because I want to be the best I can be."
   Stout has been one of the top scorers for her team, yet she realizes that basketball is not a one dimensional sport.
   "I realize that a person may score several points in a game and that's good, but one person cannot win the game themselves," remarked Stout. "It takes everyone being a leader, and I think that all the girls have done that here at Hampton.
   If there is one quality about Kari that jumps right at you, it is the fact she bases all her success upon the blessings of God.
   "God has given me the ability to be a fairly decent basketball player, and I am thankful for that. I just want my teammates to see God in my life, because I don't know for sure how many go to church, so I try to set an example for them."
   According to coach Leslie Campbell, " Kari has the potential to succeed at the next level."
   Stout has aspirations of going to Milligan and playing basketball with former teammate and pal Ginny White.
   "I've wanted to go to Milligan since I was a little kid," stated Stout. "I promised a very special person that I would go to Milligan before they passed away, and I am going to fulfill that promise."
   There are two very important people in Kari's life that she feels have made the biggest impact on her.
   " Monica Calhoun has basically raised me, and I could never begin to tell her how much that I appreciate all that she's done for me," stated Stout. " She's been like a mom to me."
   Another person that has made a difference is Suzanne Barr: " She has shown me many things by the way she treats others around her. She has helped me keep my faith in God and I know when I have a problem that she will be there for me."
   Kari has some advice for those young ladies who might be thinking of playing for the Lady Bulldogs in the future, "Always keep your faith in God, and do the very best you can."
   Stout has a dream after her high school and college days are completed. "I would really love to play in the WNBA. I don't know if they look at players in this area, but I would love to play."
   If the WNBA doesn't work out, Kari is making plans to secure a good job with a degree in Accounting from Milligan.
   No one knows what the future may hold for Kari Stout, but one thing is for sure: She has her priorities in order. Her success, to this point, is a good indication of that.