Bear Creek School senior Trevor McRae chuckles when he recalls being a short, skinny freshman who mainly fired 3-point shots toward the hoop.
At 5-foot-9 then, he began his basketball growth during his sophomore year and that summer with Kyle Keyes, owner of I-Ball Basketball Academy in Woodinville.
“He helped me with my game a lot, worked on driving and being more confident — stronger,” McRae, who now stands 6-1, said at a recent practice.
This season, the point guard/shooting guard is one of four Grizzly captains that have led the squad to an 8-3 record in 1A Emerald City League play and a 13-5 overall mark at press time. They’ll face off against University Prep in a big league game at 7:30 p.m. Friday at home in Redmond.
McRae is hitting just under 20 points per game and amassed a season-high 28 points in a victory over Eastside Prep. He was recruited by California Lutheran University and will be headed to the Division III school in Thousand Oaks, California, in the fall to continue his basketball career. On the academics front, he enjoys the sciences and plans on focusing on biology — possibly in the marine field — in college.
In that Eastside Prep triumph, McRae joined three other Bear Creek players in reaching the 1,000-point club in their Grizzly careers. The others are Jamie Meyer (class of 2010), 1,500-plus points; Lucas Peterson (class of 2011), 1,000-plus points; and Luke Blankenbeckler (class of 2014), 1,000-plus points.
During his four years on varsity, McRae said he’s thrived on being part of a team, trusting others and building relationships. As a captain last year, he admitted to residing on the quiet side, but he’s stepped his voice up this year to lead the team.
Former Bear Creek teammate Chaz Bruner and coach Taylor Cliett, both of whom passed away in the last 2-3 years, are always with the Grizzlies in spirit on and off the court. One of the team’s sayings is “Competitive Brotherhood,” which uses Bruner’s initials.
“It’s definitely been a big motivation for us as a team to fight for them and just remember them. We definitely miss them, and wish he could be on the court with us and coach Taylor could still be here coaching us,” said McRae, who also honors his brother Connor, who passed away about 12 years ago.
The Reporter asked McRae a series of questions for a behind-the-scenes glimpse into his life.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
Just be yourself, don’t let anyone change who you are.
If you could go to dinner with one person, who would that be?
Kevin Durant, just ‘cause he’s my favorite basketball player and it would be interesting to hear his story.
What’s a special skill that you’d like to learn?
I’d like to learn how to juggle.
If you could have any super power, what would that be?
What’s your dream vacation spot?
The Bahamas. I’ve always wanted to go there.
What’s your favorite movie of all time?
“Iron Man 3.”