Cherrith Wiersma Young and Chassie Wiersma

It is only fitting that these two sisters born minutes apart should be honored together at tonight’s ceremony.  Both young women led Crater to back-to-back Southern Oregon Conference basketball championships in 1997 and 1998 and were a major reason that Crater for the OSAA basketball tournament in 1997 and then came back the next year, advancing to the title game. This was the first time a women’s team south of Eugene had ever played in a State Championship game.  They led Crater to 46 wins versus 8 losses in their two Crater years, all the losses coming to Top 10 ranked teams. And they set the path for Crater women players to come, as they were the first from Crater to play Division 1 basketball.

Cherrith, like her sister a 1998 graduate, was named 2nd team All Conference in both 1997 and 1998. In 1998 she was named to the Honorable Mention All-State basketball team and still holds the senior class record for the highest three-point shooting at an amazing 50%.  A serious knee injury near the end of her junior year probably prevented her from receiving a college offer, but it did not deter her as she was a walk-on at Oregon State University and quickly found a place on the team, playing there for two years before transferring to the University of Wyoming where she continued to play basketball.  She graduated from the University of Wyoming in 2004 with a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing.

For the past twelve years, Cherrith has worked in the Emergency Department at the Rogue Regional Medical Center where she is a staff charge nurse.  In addition to this work she also is also connected to the Jackson County SART program serving as a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner.  She lives in Medford with her husband, Keith Young, who she met while both were at OSU.  They have been married for fourteen years and have three daughters, Taylor (8), Brynlee (6) and Rilyn (2 ½).

Chassie Wiersma was named to the Southern Oregon All-Conference women’s basketball team in 1997 as well as 1998. In addition, she was selected to the All-State Team in 1998.  After her senior season ended, she was selected to play in the 1998 Oregon-Washington All-Star game.  Chassie holds the Crater record for the highest field goal percentage in one season at 60% and holds the senior class record for free throw percentage at 81%.  Upon graduation from Crater, she received a scholarship to play basketball at Oregon State University where, like Cherrith, she played for two years before transferring to the University of Wyoming to pursue a degree in nursing and to finish out her two years of eligibility. She graduated with her sister in 2004 with a degree in nursing.

Upon graduation Chassie lived in Denver for four years but has spent the last nine years in Portland.  She was an ICU bedside nurse for nine years but currently is an Administrator on Duty at OHSU. In addition to this major responsibility, like Cherrith, she is a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner.  In her spare time she is an avid traveler with travels including medical relief work in Ghana and Haiti.