Some highlights of a tough Lady Knights basketball season
By Yuliani Sutedjo
Media Club Reporter
The winter is over, and with it, the Lady Knights’ basketball season.
And like the winter, the Lady Knights’ season was a tough one.
They ended the 2015-2016 season with two wins and 23 loses. But despite that, the Lady Knights are proud of what they achieved.
Highlights of some games follow.
Players, cameras, action!
Jenasia Figueroa made a beautiful lay up Jan. 16. She dribbled the ball past the free-throw line, and suddenly, an opponent from State University of New York (SUNY) Delhi was on guard and ready, face-to-face with Figueroa.
Figueroa grabbed the ball, took a step and spun her body to the left, bringing her right foot to the floor. She swept her hand up and sent the ball away. What a beautiful layup! It boosted everyone, and brought cheers from the players and spectators as the team rallied to catch up at the last minute.
In the last three seconds, Central Penn College and SUNY Delhi were even, at 83 points. Then, a player charged with the ball toward the basket and shot, but wasn’t able to make the points.
But as the ball fell, Melissa Ruiz snatched the rebound and with one second left, she shot the ball to the basket — and scored. Central Penn racked up the win (85-83) against SUNY Delhi with Figueroa’s lay up, Ruiz’s basket and team effort. (The other victory was against Penn State York, 58-57, on Nov. 1.)
Another highlight occurred during the last game of the season, Feb. 17, against University of Valley Forge (UVF won, 84-50). Lady Knight Chaneil Croxton, who played her last day for Central Penn during that match, took a pass from Nicole Scmidhamer. Croxton caught it, got into position and made a spectacular three-pointer.
Everyone jumped and shouted, “Yeah, Nelly!” (Croxton’s nickname is Nelly.)
Croxton was happy to have achieved her goal as a basketball player for Central Penn – playing in that game. After the game, Croxton thanked everyone who was patient and worked with her. Her message for players coming up: Keep growing and become better athletes.
Croxton wasn’t the only senior saying goodbye. Janay Nelson, Myesha McGhee and Nicole Schmidhamer bid farewell to their team. Nelson, McGhee and Schmidhamer left this message: Keep practicing and enjoy every minute you play.
When the sweat had dried and the sneakers had stopped screeching, Coach Kasey Hicks said the seniors will be missed, and welcomed Croxton, Nelson, McGhee and Schmidhamer to come to practices.
Stories of victories aren’t always told in scores. The highlights above are part of the victorious story of Lady Knights Basketball.
Echoes of victory sounded off the court after the season.
On March 1, three Lady Knights received an award from the United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA). Angie Kovac, Mary Weingartner and Schmidhamer were designated Academic All American players.
Schmidhamer also was Honorable Mention for the All American team of USCAA’s Division II women’s basketball.
These awards mean the ladies dedicated their time not only to their sport but also to their education.
Kovac, Weingartner and Schmidhamer said they were very honored to be recognized. They said time management is critical to success in college sports, and that they do their best, as others should, to balance sports and classes.
Keeping at the drills
With that in mind, Lady Knights Basketball will keep fighting and seeking a way to grow during the off season.
To keep the team and its members growing in their skills and dedication, Hicks said that after a break, they will pursue a lighter-than-usual workout schedule through the year to prepare for the coming season.
The reason for the smaller number of workouts is to sharpen each individual’s strengths, Hicks said.
“We have a lot of hard workers, a lot of competitors, and that is exactly what we will be building this off season,” Hicks said.