Only a freshman at the time, North Tahoe goalie Angela Wood threw her body in front of a hard-charging Truckee forward, thwarting a likely one-on-one goal while getting spiked in the process.
She picked herself up off the turf, wiped away her tears and resumed her post, having displayed a glimpse of the skill and guts that would propel her to the top of the league.
For her four years of excellence on the soccer pitch, basketball court and track and field, Wood was selected as the Sierra Sun’s Female Athlete of the Year from North Tahoe High School.
“Angela will be missed not only because of her athletic abilities, but also because of her personality,” said Shaun Chilkotowsky, head basketball coach Wood’s senior season. “She played sports because of her competitive nature. She worked hard when called upon but was also the one who made the game fun.”
Wood excelled in each of her three sports, and for all four years of her high school career.
Aside from holding down the goal for the North Tahoe soccer team, she was a valuable member of the Lakers’ basketball team with her speed and scoring ability, and also was a multi-faceted talent in track and field.
She represented each sport with a shining attitude and sprightly sense of humor that brightened the spirits of her teammates and coaches.
“She ran all four years for us and was a major part of our relay teams,” said Rob Daniels, head North Tahoe track and field coach. “Next year, it will be extremely difficult to find someone who will get us that many points, and with that big of a smile.”
Wood recently concluded her high school athletic career in the Division III state track and field championships, where she earned a fourth-place medal in the shot put and was part of the third-place 4 x 100 relay team. She also advanced to state in the long jump.
“Angela was extremely crucial. Besides scoring as an individual in the long jump and shot put at state and divisionals, she was the third leg of our 4 x 100 team,” Daniels said, adding that Wood was at her best when keeping the mood light.
“One of the things that drove me insane — but I do think it helped her — was her ability to sit back and crack a joke right before a race or jump. I feel that it was her way in relaxing herself so she could perform better.”
Wood anchored the North Tahoe basketball team in the winter. A rangy 5 foot 7 and with quickness to spare, she could play any position from point guard to forward. She often guarded the opposing team’s top scorer, and regularly created fast-break opportunities with her defensive prowess and speed in the open court.
“Angela was the foundation of [our team]. If a play needed to be made or a stop was needed, Angela was the one to step up,” Chilkotowsky said. “She would take on any challenge that was thrown at her and would never shy away from competition.
“Angela at times was like a free safety on the basketball court. She knew where she had to be to make plays.”
As good as she was at basketball and track and field, Wood shone brightest on a soccer pitch.
“Angela made incredible saves,” said North Tahoe coach Kristin Carlson. “She had such fast reaction times. She definitely kept us in a lot of games.”
A four-year varsity player, Wood developed into the best goalie in a Northern Division III league that was loaded with talented keepers. She was voted her senior year to the All-League first team ahead of Incline’s Sarah Wright, Whittell’s Brittany Boulet and White Pine’s Amanda Allred. Wood also was voted Defensive MVP her junior year and received honorable mention recognition as a sophomore.
She will not easily be replaced.
“She’s just a good person,” Carlson said. “She’s enthusiastic and funny, and she always kept everyone on their toes. She’ll definitely be missed.”