Jan. 26, 2010
Hi Wildcat fans!
Unfortunately this past week we lost two close road games, one to Indiana (61-55) and the other to Iowa (78-69). In both contests I believe there is one major factor that could have changed the outcome. At Indiana we gave up way too many offensive rebounds. The stats can be really deceiving because there was only a one-rebound difference. In reality, they converted their shots when they got a second or third chances in a single possession and that usually occurred at crucial times during the game, putting us at a major disadvantage. At Iowa our fault was fouling too many times. We sent their team to the line 37 times to our 14. It is very difficult to beat a team that makes more than double the amount of free throws than your team attempts. Now it is time for our team to re-focus because we have a big games coming up against Michigan State at home on Thursday and away at Wisconsin on Sunday.
Recently in my English class I had to write a reflection paper on an event that affected me in some way or taught me some life lesson. I ended up choosing a story form my basketball career that I thought I would share. So here is the "condensed version"...
The summer before my freshman year of college I was asked to try out for the USA U-19 team, which I ended up making. We traveled to Bratislava, Slovakia where we not only competed for, but won a gold medal. I was selected, along with 11 other girls around my age, to represent the United States and play against other countries. It was an experience I never thought I would have a chance to have but at the same time, it began the long line of what I like to call `humbling' experiences. In order to guarantee the USA to come back with a gold medal the USA committee composed a list of 45 of the most talented basketball players, from all over the nation, to come and tryout for the team. After they narrowed the team down to 12 people, I was astounded at the amount of talent this one team held.
One day during practice we were scrimmaging. I was guarding the best post player on the team, meaning the best post player of my age group. She turned to shoot the ball and I blocked it. Inside I was stoked! I just played great defense and I knew at that moment that I could play against any post player my age. Our head coach, Doug Bruno (DePaul's head coach) stopped the scrimmage and I started to think how he was going to congratulate me for a great effort and point out to the team what great defense I had played. Boy, was I wrong. Instead he started yelling at me asking me, "Why didn't you come up with the ball?" I didn't understand why he could possibly be mad at me. He continued, "Look, you put all this effort into blocking her, right?" I nodded my head in response. "Well all that effort just went to waste. The other team got the ball and scored it after you blocked them. What good is it if the still score, come on ... you're better than that." Then I understood his point. It was no longer acceptable just to get a good block. You had to make the extra effort and gain possession of the ball too. It took me a while to put it into context but that lesson was something that I can apply to every situation in life. If you think that you have reached your full potential doing something, in reality, you probably have not. I have reached certain points in my life where I am comfortable and where I am. However, this lesson, which has been reinforced many times, is a lesson on how you can always get better and that your potential is truly endless.
This week we play Michigan State, a very talented team, at home. For the most part all their starters are pretty even in the scoring column. However they have a 6'9" center Allyssa DeHaan who really makes you change the way you prepare for the game. Then for our next game, we head to Wisconsin to take on the Badgers. They are 4-4 in conference play and we played them twice last year and split the series. Should be a good matchup!
Until next time,