2020 Kennewick power forward Kyson Rose is propelling Kamiakin to their best season in years.

Right now the Braves are a spectacular 18-3, and are a statewide favorite to make a title run.

“I honestly thought that we could be 21-0 right now,” Rose said. “We dropped a couple close games, but I think those were great learning experiences for us, and we’re right where we want to be.” 

The Braves boast a high volume of incredible athletes, with the likes of Messiah Jones, Trey Arland, Steven Westermeyer, and Jeremiah Kennell

But if you want to talk about a truly larger than life presence on this Kamiakin roster, that would be Kyson Rose. 

He checks in at a menacing 6-foot-9, 235-pounds. His game strongly resembles that of NBA superstar Nikola Jokic, in that he can make shots from all parts of the floor, is capable of racking up the rebounds, and is a fantastic distributor. Anytime opponents try and double-team this monster player, you can count on Rose to make a pinpoint pass to a wide open teammate. 

The best way to describe Rose’s senior campaign would be breakout season. So far he’s averaging 20 points, 15 rebounds, and five assists per contest, all career highs. 

It wasn’t always this way however. While Rose has been a varsity mainstay the last couple seasons, he certainly wasn’t the level of difference maker that he is now.

“I decided to come into this season with a new mentality. I said to myself, ‘I’m 6-foot-9, I need to start going through people,'” Rose said.

During the early parts of his prep career, Rose would opt to take fadeaway shots, or simply pass it out to one of his teammates. This is not the case anymore. Rose takes a lot of pride in driving to the hoop, and being a physical presence. That mentality has helped take Kamiakin to a whole new level.

Not only is that physical mindset going to help him in this upcoming state playoff run, but it will also help him in his basketball career for years to come.

Rose loves repping the red & gold
Jenne Kissell / jkphotography

Anytime your 6-foot-9 and can move well, that’s naturally going to catch the attention of college basketball programs.

Rose would wrap up his basketball recruiting fairly early in the process however, as he committed to Central Washington University this past October. 

“The huge thing with Central is coach Brandon Rinta was a great communicator with me,” Rose said. “He was at every one of my AAU tournaments he could make it to. Whether it’d be Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Bellevue, he was almost always there.”

While Rose was also receiving interest from Division I programs like Eastern Washington University and Cal Poly, he said that he put a lot of value in attending school close to home, so his family can watch him play. 

He cites his mom, Annette Rose, as the biggest inspiration in his life. Rose said that she’s sacrificed a lot to help him become the person he is today, and that having her at his games means everything. 

Other factors in his commitment to CWU include the sports management program (Rose would like to work in an NBA office down the line), the small town feel of Ellensburg, and also the dream of helping catapult the Wildcats into a national title contender. 

Looking back at Rose's varsity career, there's one performance that stands out exponentially above the rest. This past late January, he would set the Kamiakin scoring record after dropping 46 points against Hanford.

As fun as it was scoring all those points, what Rose will remember the most from that game is seeing how excited his teammates were to see him do well. It really meant a lot to him that his teammates were happy for his success.

Right now his focus is 100% on helping Kamiakin have the best season they’ve had in years. With their athleticism, size, experience, and also excellent coaching, Rose believes they check all the boxes of a state title contender.  

You can catch Rose and the Braves in action this Friday, when they host the Mt.Spokane Wildcats in a primetime district championship game. 

“Going into the playoffs, we need to have an angry mindset every game,” Rose said. “I genuinely believe in our guys so much, and it’s going to come down to how bad we want it.”