Rowing coaches, athletes remember legacy of the late Samantha Scott

A picture, flowers and a candle at memorial service held for K-State rower Samantha Scott at the Victory Drive Rowing Complex on Nov. 6. (Dalton Wainscott l Collegian Media Group)

After the sudden passing of Kansas State senior rowing team member and coxswain Samantha Scott, coaches and teammates shed light on who she was as a teammate, friend, leader and student.

As a member of the rowing team, Scott held the top coxswain spot. She was someone that her teammates respected and trusted.

Head coach Patrick Sweeney felt especially comfortable with Scott running the boat, saying “coaches need someone they can trust and really rely on, and Scott made that easy.”

Taylor Hartman, sophomore in art education and three-year member of the team, said she admired Scott for how she pushed her teammates.

“She sat down in a boat and pushed girls who were twice her size to do things they never thought that they could do,” Hartman said.

The respect that Scott earned from her teammates was also attributed to her personality.

“She didn’t get worked up about small things and liked to have fun with her friends,” fellow fifth-year coxswain and accounting major Allie Kleinsmith said of Scott.

Scott also held the respect of her coaches, including one who was a former teammate. Kayla Brock was a K-State rower from 2013-2017 and is currently a graduate assistant coach for the team.

“Sam was the best kind of teammate; she was the kind that was able to pull the best out of each person in the boat which is unique since there were eight of us who all respond and are motivated differently,” Brock said.

Part of Scott’s ability to pull the best out of each of her teammates came from her judgment-free personality. Elaina Grantham, a fifth-year member of the crew and senior in entrepreneurship, testified to this.

“You could pour your heart out and she would be there for support, guidance or just a listening ear,” Grantham said.

Academically, Scott was hardworking and dedicated. She was an architectural engineering major and made the Academic All Big 12 second team during the 2017-2018 school year.

Scott was a native of Fort Morgan, Colorado, and leaves behind her parents C.W. and Melissa Scott and brother Casey Scott, 28.

Assistant coach Hanna Wiltfong says that Scott’s legacy will be felt for a long time.

“Sam is a part of us,” Wiltfong said. “She is in the DNA of these women and this hurt will last for a long time, but the K-State family has already shown that no one needs to go forward alone.”

Wiltfong said she and the entire rowing family would like to thank the athletic department for the “beautiful job honoring Sam in the moments of silence and the intentional details.”

Through Scott’s death, she will be remembered as fun loving, goofy, sassy as hell, witty, hardworking, dedicated and, as her closest teammates liked to call her, “Little Swiss.”

Hi, I'm Molly Hackett and I graduated with a Bachelor's of Science in broadcast journalism in May 2020. When I worked for the Collegian, I had a variety of different jobs, including managing editor and sports editor. Additionally, I served a one year term on the Collegian Media Group Board of Directors. I also worked for KKSU-TV and appeared as an anchor on MHK All Day during my final semester at K-State. In my free time, I like to spend time with the people closest to me, travel, drink coffee and take naps.