Cornerstone University's women's basketball head coach, Katie (Feenstra) Mattera was inducted into the Grand Rapids Sports Hall of Fame (GRSHOF) on Wednesday, Oct. 24, for her accomplishments in women's basketball.
Mattera, 29, played four years in the WNBA after an outstanding collegiate career at Liberty University, averaging 17.8 points and 10.5 rebounds per game. During her four years at Liberty, she also was selected to the All-Big South First Team three times (2003, 2004, 2005), the Kodak/WBCA All-America Region II Team (2004), and was named Big South Player of the Year three times (2003, 2004, 2005) and Big South Women's Athlete of the Year (2004).
Mattera's career continued in the WNBA where she played in San Antonio (2005, 2006) and in Detroit (2007), capping that season with a trip to the playoffs where she averaged 5.2 points and 4.1 rebounds per game in her first postseason action. She was then acquired by Atlanta in 2008 before returning to San Antonio in 2009.
Mattera, who was hired by Cornerstone in May, had most recently played professionally in the China Pro League before taking the Cornerstone University position.
"It was a great honor to even be nominated," said Mattera of her induction into the GRSHOF. "It was a very humbling experience."
Mattera was inducted alongside Edward "Mike" Murphy (Warren Reynolds Lifetime Achievement), Michel King (Olympic Archery Coach), Ted Hillary (Officiating), and Naomi Lang (Olympic Ice Dancer).
"I never dreamed, when I first picked up a basketball, that someday this would happen," said Mattera. "It just goes to show what hard work and dedication does, and I'm very glad that I get to glorify God through it all."
Mattera was joined at the induction ceremony by her family and her new Cornerstone basketball team.
Robyn Veltkamp, senior guard for the Cornerstone University Golden Eagles, said, "The ceremony was such a great event to honor Coach Katie for all that she accomplished. Being at an event like the GRSHOF gives people the motivation to keep working hard at their goals."
Cornerstone's women's basketball team had some struggles during the offseason after the retirement of their previous head coach, Carla Fles, who served 13 seasons on the bench. Bringing together the veteran players, a new coach and a group of new freshman players challenged the team's path before the season even began.
"With so many new components to our team and dealing with nagging and new injuries, we really needed to get to know each other on and off the court," said Veltkamp. "Coach Katie has done a great job in her position, though, and continues to push us every day in practice in preparation for our first games."
For more information, contact Kelli Cottrell at [email protected].