Vernon Secondary School Panthers senior Kelsey Watts is one of six recruits who will join the UBCO Heat women’s basketball team in 2020.. (Contributed)

Vernon Panthers guard set to join UBCO Heat

The VSS grad is one of six recruits who will join UBCO’s women’s basketball team in 2020

With her days of high school competition wrapped up, Vernon’s Kelsey Watts is ready to take the next step with the UBCO Heat Women’s Basketball team.

Hailing from Vernon Secondary School, Watts is one of six recruits who will join the Heat this coming season. There, she’ll join fellow Panthers alumni Brianna and Kelsey Falk on the 2020 UBCO roster.

“UBCO is a young, exciting team. I have had the chance to compete with or against many of the current and incoming players in my High School career,” Watts said. “I’m looking forward to taking my game to the next level while wearing blue and gold. It is an incredible campus, close to my hometown. I was offered a chance to play basketball here.”

The speedy combo guard is also a dual-sport athlete, having racked up accolades on both the basketball and volleyball court at Vernon Secondary. In her senior year her teams in both sports reached the top 10 provincially.

Standing at 5’9”, Watts trained with Junior Heat Club at various times in her youth, while also playing with the Sky Volleyball Club in 2016 and 2020.

Watts seems to be capable on any kind of hardwood, having also been a member of the Okanagan School of Ballet for 12 years before deciding to focus on basketball and volleyball.

The Vernon product will study sciences with her sights set on either dentistry or medicine following her undergraduate degree. Watts landed on the principal’s list every year in high school along with being named top English, Math, Leadership and Science student in various years.

Her smarts in the classroom also translate to the basketball court. Heat coach Bobby Mitchell said Watts’ cerebral game, combined with her speed and work ethic, has him excited to see what she’ll do at the next level.

“Kelsey loves the game and is always working hard on her game, a combo guard who can really shoot it, along with a very high IQ and understanding of the game. We are excited to see where Kelsey can get to at this level.”

The UBCO Heat women’s squad has boasted a Vernon Secondary alumnus every year since 2011.

READ MORE: Vernon high school football stars ready for the next level

READ MORE: Coldstream defenceman warrants U17 camp call

Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at
Follow us: Facebook | Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Six affordable homes slated for Lumby

The village and Habitat for Humanity enter agreement to build on Shields Avenue

Fines now payable by credit card in Coldstream

Card payment option now available for parking and other violation tickets

Downtown Vernon #OpensWithCare amid COVID-19

Back to business, but not as usual as pandemic continues

Tough time for tree fruits as some B.C. farm products soar

Province reports record 2019 sales, largely due to cannabis

21 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in B.C. as virus ‘silently circulates’ in broader community

Health officials urge British Columbians to enjoy summer safely as surge continues

Mitchell’s Musings: Trump targets winning strategy with staff

Yet another strategy meeting behind closed doors at the White House: Donald… Continue reading

Bikers Are Buddies set up in North Okanagan-Shuswap

Non-profit motorcycle group rides to raise awareness around bullying

EDITORIAL: Counting the costs of a pandemic

As COVID-19 continues, Canada’s debt and deficit are growing while credit rating drops

Separate trials set for 2018 Kelowna Canada Day killing

Four people have been charged with manslaughter in relation to Esa Carriere’s death, including two youths

Kootnekoff: New workplace harassment and violence requirements

Susan Kootnekoff is the founder of Inspire Law, her diverse legal career spans over 20 years.

Dyer: Buying an electric car

Kristy Dyer is a columnist for Black Press Media who writes about the environment

Summerland Museum to hold walking tours

Community’s past will be explained during series of summer tours

Summerland mayor asks for community conversation following racist vandalism

Home of Indo-Canadian family in Summerland was targeted on evening of July 13

Most Read