About Us

About Excel


Excel Sports Academy’s custom training environment offers everything a basketball athlete requires to succeed on the court and in life.

Excel provides student athletes with the ability to realize their full potential, on and off the court by offering:

• Unparalleled year-round facility located in Tacoma-University Place
• Exceptional integrated educational curricula
• An elite team of coaching and training professionals
• Mental skills training
• A complete nutritional focus, including proper hydration (Provided by Clinical Dietitian from Swedish Hospital)
• Leadership, communication and life skills development
• Top level local, regional and national competition
• Extensive club, league and tournament competition schedules
• Multiple training program options from academy to camps
• An inspirational environment that fosters individual, team and community success

Regardless of your skill level, whether your goal is short or long-term athletic development, our training systems prove you can master skills and achieve results.

Excel in Sports

Great athletes develop great routines and disciplines.  At Excel we will challenge each athlete to  play to his and her potential through coaching, practice, disciplined workouts and training.  Excel has assembled some of the top trainers in the Northwest to ensure that your student athlete will receive quality training and coaching.  By combining expert instruction and unique training methodologies, your student athlete will experience the best he or she can in athletic training, preparedness and competitive game play.

Excel in Academics

Grades matter…the staff at Excel Sports Academy is committed to the overall development of your student athlete. There is more to an athlete than simply his or her athletic abilities. Statistics show there are more individuals who receive college financial support for academics than for sports.

Excel in Life

The entire staff at Excel Sports Academy is committed to the overall development of the student athlete. We believe there is more to an athlete than simply athletic abilities. We focus attention on building and fostering character, attitude and strength of mind to form well-rounded student athletes. Life skills are not hereditary; they must be taught. With that in mind, we at Excel continue to develop our curriculum around building social and emotional fitness, helping to shape the complete person and student athlete.

Vision & Mission

mission-imgExcel Sports Academy is dedicated to providing youth with the fundamental physical and mental training needed to reach their highest potential as athletes and students of life. We put leadership principles to work, teaching strong moral values, character, academics and service on and off the court. Through teamwork and competition, our students learn and practice skills to hone their athleticism and social development. From beginner to advanced, our programs offer skills and experiences that help student athletes excel.


Excel Sports Academy is proud to feature one of Seattle-area’s premier indoor sport training and conditioning facilities.

Tacoma-University Place

ADDRESS – 2818 69th Ave W, University Place, WA 98466

One of Washington State’s finest private sport training facilities, Excel’s Tacoma site offers basketball, volleyball, and baseball training. This unique 30,000 square-foot four-court facility located in University Place, features batting cages, pitcher’s mound and practice turf. The site also includes Junior Varsity and Varsity courts for tournament play in basketball and Power league play in Volleyball.

We provide rental opportunities in Tacoma depending on rental needs and availability. Please email or call to inquire about our rental options and fees.


Chris Christian

Chris Christian is a leader who passionately believes in creating opportunities for student athletes to succeed in all aspects of life by building character in tomorrow’s leaders through learning, leadership and service. He is a highly accomplished operations executive, entrepreneur and business leader who brings extensive, dynamic experience in the corporate hospitality industry to Excel. Through this experience, Chris developed disciplined leadership skills he uses to inspire, motivate and develop successful athletes. Chris teaches leadership and reiterates “Talent is one thing – Attitude is everything.”



Alexandria Montgomery (Coach and Trainer)

alex b-ball 3

We are extremely excited about the opportunity to have this WNBA Star working closely with our youth specifically assisting Brandon Huntley and Zachary Carter with the 6th grade boys teams. Alex will also be conducting skill development clinics, both personal one on one and group training sessions .  Over the next several months before she returns to Pro competition, she will be working on plans with Excel to host Free Skills Clinics. The first clinic will be an all girls clinic in the month of November.

Alex is a local hometown girl from Tacoma and attended Lincoln High School. She attended college at Georgia Tech. After graduating, she was drafted by New York Liberty where she played from 2011-2013. She has played overseas in France, Brazil, and Israel. She is currently playing for the San Antonio Stars.

Brandon Huntley (Coach and Trainer)

Brandon Huntley Bio


Brandon is entering his seventh season as an Assistant Coach and the Recruiting Coordinator for the University of Puget Sound Women’s Basketball Team. While at Puget Sound, Brandon has coached 14 All-Northwest Conference Team Players, include five 1st team selections, the Northwest Conference Player of the Year, and a 2nd team All American. He has also helped produce three 1000-point scorers while compiling a 104-55 team record in Six Seasons. Brandon is the head coach of the Student Athlete World U-16 Team USA team, which took the silver medal at the 2016 United World Games in Klagenfurt, Austria. Brandon spent three years at Johnson & Wales University and was the Associate Women’s Basketball Coach for the 2008-09 and 2009-10 seasons. At Johnson & Wales, Huntley served as the Recruiting Coordinator and was also in charge of player development. He coached seven All Conference Team Players, including two 1st team selections, and the programs all time leading scorer. He also produced three 1000-point scorers at Johnson & Wales.

Brandon is a native of Lakewood, Wash., playing high school basketball at Lakes High School, where he helped lead Lakes to the state playoffs for the first time in 19 years. Brandon played one year at Radford University in Radford, VA. Before transfering to Portland State University and then to Johnson & Wales University, where he completed his B.S. in Sports, Event, and Entertainment Management.

Gabrielle “Gabby” Wade (Coach and Trainer)

Assistant Coach at NCAA Division III Pacific Lutheran University, Gabby has great passion in coaching and teaching the fundamentals and skills of basketball. She previously coached two seasons at her high school Alma Mater, River Ridge High School, where she was instrumental in helping to continue a strong tradition of teaching and helping the girls basketball program become a winning program.

Coach Wade has seen and experienced success at every level. She is a graduate of Western Washington University where she excelled as a student athlete and starter player for the Viking women’s basketball program. Gabby loves helping the youth reach their goals and is excited about her role in overseeing and building the Excel Sports Academy Girl’s program in Tacoma. Gabby is a real student of the game…


Zachary Carter (Coach and Trainer)


Also known as Zach or Dad, by his only son Terrin. Zach walked the stomping grounds of Tacoma for 21 out of his 27 years of living. Born in Blueisland Illinois in 1987 and has been a relative of basketball ever since. Participated in the AAU circuit from fourth grade until graduating from Foss high school in 2006. With mentors like Jermaine Perrien, Chris Hyppa, and mostly his father, Zachary Carter Sr. He has devoted his time to Tacoma’s youth by mentoring and coaching basketball.

Starting in Metro Parks and the YMCA late night volunteering to officiating games and coaching multiple grade levels in 2006 to 2013. He then went onto coaching Giaudrone’s JV and Varsity boys from 2010 to 2012. He has also officiated and coached for the YBDL/Swish organization since 2010 while attending and graduating from Pierce Community College and is only a few credit hours away from obtaining his 4 year degree from the University of Puget Sound, where he has maintained a 3.5 GPA. 

Te’Aire Bell (Trainer)

PJ Price (Trainer and Coach)

Devon Trapps (Trainer)

Benito Rich (Trainer)

De’Andre Riggins (Coach and Trainer)

Josh Heng (Trainer)


Roxanne Cano (Administrative Assistant)

Roxanne CanoThere’s a certain beauty in chaos. Roxanne’s passion is organizing the chaos so that the beauty can shine through. She is a full time mother to an amazing three-year old boy who definitely knows how to shake things up. Roxanne is also a full time Project Manager for an IT Consulting firm based out of Washington D.C. She didn’t take the traditional route of going to college and earning a degree however still managed to get into a career field that she loves. Her career has given her a breadth of knowledge and experience in working with people, planning and managing projects, and delivering great customer experiences. When Roxanne has free time, she likes to spend time with her younger siblings, read, and dabble in graphic design. She finally got her passport and plans to do some traveling in the near future.