Overlake’s Jane Cosmos and Eliza Friend lead the way for the Owls. They are wearing jerseys for Friday’s Coaches vs. Cancer pink night. Andy Nystrom / staff photo

Overlake’s Jane Cosmos and Eliza Friend lead the way for the Owls. They are wearing jerseys for Friday’s Coaches vs. Cancer pink night. Andy Nystrom / staff photo

Overlake girls playing for each other, scoring success

Owls lead the 1A Emerald City League.

Eliza Friend smiles when she glances down to her right at Jane Cosmos. Friend, who stands 6-foot-4, towers over her teammate at 5-foot-9, but the two have been on equal footing since they first met as Overlake School middle-schoolers.

Cosmos tilts her head upward and grins back at Friend, who was a year older than her fellow Owl in sixth grade. This is where they and other current varsity players formed basketball and friendship bonds, which have grown exponentially over time and are at a premium this season. At press time, the Owls girls squad stood atop the 1A Emerald City League with an 8-0 record and were 11-3 overall.

These are good times for the Owls and their new head coach John Augustavo.

“This is really our first year coaching them, so it’s taken us a few weeks to kind of get them all on the same page. And now that they’re all on the same page, they’re playing real well,” said Augustavo, who is joined by assistant coach Rick Kelly. “They have to play for each other and make each other better, and as soon as they can grasp that, I think this team can go pretty far.”

Augustavo coached at 4A KingCo Inglemoor High from 2002-2015 and led his girls teams to four state tournaments. Kelly was an assistant with the Viks, and after taking a few years off, the duo wanted to get back in the coaching game.

The hoops terrain now is much different than 4A KingCo, Augustavo noted, adding, “We’ve both said, you make the big time where you go.” Augustavo feels he has all the pieces — eight hard-working players who shine in all aspects of the game — on his side this season. At the San Diego Surf N’ Slam Tournament in late December, the 1A Owls beat 3A Metro’s Eastside Catholic, 42-35, and hung tight with other 3A and 4A squads. Friend averaged 28 points a game during the tournament.

“We’re all fairly young players, we don’t have any seniors on the team, and so we all really have to stand up and all be leaders,” said Cosmos, a sophomore guard who has averaged 16 points and five steals per game. “We have that flow and we just play for each other and have fun.”

Cosmos was especially proud of the Owls’ performance in their 56-47 win over Seattle Academy, a tough team they’ll face again at 5:30 p.m. on Friday at home.

Augustavo said Cosmos has an endless engine that never shuts down. On the team’s play, Cosmos added: “It’s all fast ball. We go out there, we start running. It’s all about getting those looks, going up and down the court, getting those points, getting the steals. It’s all about keeping our head in the game.”

Friend, a junior post, said that developing friendships and trust throughout girls’ history together has led to a successful season. The Owls possess chemistry and they’re in it for each other — no one’s trying to be the star of the team, Friend added.

“Our friendship has grown over time. As we’ve progressed and as we’ve gotten better as a team, it seems that it will become something really special,” said Friend, who has averaged 14 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks per game. “That’s just part of Overlake. We’ve all been here for so long and we love our school so much.”

Cosmos and Friend’s older brothers used to play on the same Overlake team together, and Friend has had two older brothers and a sister play ball for the Owls. She’s the baby of the family, she jokes.

From her siblings, “I learned how to lead, how to be a good teammate, and I also learned a little bit about post play just ‘cause I played with my brothers in our driveway,” Friend said with a laugh.

Now in her own leadership role, Friend wants to make sure everyone is united and staying positive on and off the court. Keeping the team dynamic strong is key along with emphasizing sportsmanship. They treat their opponents with respect, and Friend added, “It’s a fun game, and it should stay a fun game.”

Other team members are juniors Annabelle Wiley (5-8 wing) and Jessica Colleran (5-8 post), sophomore Jamison Foster (5-4 guard) and freshmen Rachel Sapirstein (6-0 wing), Addie Sapirstein (5-9 wing) and Mary Cosmos (5-7 guard).

With everyone on board and getting chances to handle the ball and take shots, the team is set to go far, said Cosmos, adding that effort, attitude and focus with be their three-pronged attack. Coming out strong from the opening tip will light the fire for the Owls.

Cosmos had one last smile on tap when describing the girls’ personalities when they’re not racking up victories on the hardwood.

“To be honest, we’re just crazy, we’re kind of dysfunctional, but it’s fun,” she said. Friend added that it’s a family type thing that keeps them going strong.

* Friday is the annual Coaches vs. Cancer pink night of basketball and fundraising for a cure. The primary charity of the evening is Alex’s Lemonade Stand: https://www.alexslemonade.org. At 7 p.m., the boys will take on Seattle Academy, and at halftime, Overlake fans will take part in a shootout to help raise funds for class of 1999 Owl graduate Matt Fisk’s cancer treatment.


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@redmond-reporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.redmond-reporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in Sports

file photo
Health department: COVID outbreaks linked to high school wrestling tournaments

At least 80 cases are tied to the events which included attendees from multiple counties and states.

Redmond High’s girls swim team took third place at the 4A state meet on Nov. 13 at the King County Aquatics Center in Federal Way. Photo courtesy of Adam Lu
Redmond swimmers shine at state meet

Redmond High’s girls swimmers notched five first-place titles and finished third in… Continue reading

Photo courtesy of Panthers Youth Rugby
Panthers Youth Rugby rolls into action

Panthers Youth Rugby is encouraging boys and girls in middle school and… Continue reading

t
Redmond coach, grapplers join Ascend Wrestling Academy

Redmond High wrestling coach Lantz Schwabenbauer and several local grapplers are part… Continue reading

A Decatur High School student in Federal Way participates in a conditioning workout in Feb. 2021 as the state eased back in to in-person activities. Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing
State announces mask requirements for student sports, performing arts

Athletes are not required to wear masks when participating in sports of any contact level while outside.

Screenshot of video obtained by Redmond police shows Richard Sherman trying to break into the Redmond home of his in-laws.
Former Seattle Seahawks player Richard Sherman charged with five misdemeanors in King County

Charges were filed following an incident at home of Sherman’s in-laws in Redmond.

Screenshot
Redmond Police arrest former Seattle Seahawk Richard Sherman

Redmond Police allege former Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman crashed into a… Continue reading

Snoqualmie Casino unveiled the first immersive Seahawks-branded table game experience Sept. 18, 2020, in a ribbon cutting dedication with Snoqualmie Tribe Council members and Snoqualmie Casino executives. Courtesy photo
Gambling Commission OKs pacts with tribes for sports betting

Agreements with 15 tribes await approval by the governor and the feds.

Kentwood High football. FILE PHOTO
WIAA Executive Board revises Season 1 sports in response to state guidelines

Practices scheduled to begin Feb. 1 for football, volleyball, soccer and 5 other sports

The Mercer Island boys basketball celebrates their 61-36 victory over Interlake in the 3A KingCo championship game on Feb. 11, 2020, at Sammamish High School. File photo
WIAA pushes back return to play for prep sports

Season 2 now begins Feb. 1 and seasons have been shortened to seven weeks each.

In this file photo from March 2020, the Federal Way High School boys basketball team reacts in the final minutes of the state quarterfinals game against Mt. Si High School. File photo
New guidelines released for return of prep sports in WA

The new plan places counties and sports in three-tier systems. No signs of a quicker return to play.

Redmond football squad is ready to ‘Pound the Rock’
Redmond football squad is ready to ‘Pound the Rock’

Mustangs open season against Squalicum.