This week I had my first two scrimmages of the season with LIT and the Celtics! It felt great to put a uniform on again, but even more incredible to represent two jersey numbers that I grew up wearing. It is almost as though I’ve come full circle. I have #14 for the Celtics which was the first number I was given back when I was eleven years old. I was playing for Coach Malafronte on my local travel league team. I stayed with that jersey number until I was in high school. In college, I chose #11 which is the number I have for LIT.
Believe it or not, jersey numbers are very important to athletes. It becomes a part of our identity. Having the same number growing up symbolizes where you started and were you hope to end up. Looking back at all the teams I’ve played for, the one thing that remained the same was my love for the game. I continue to keep in mind the first time I ever put on a basketball jersey and the number on the front of it. Here I am, 3,000 miles away playing the game I love with the first ever jersey number I wore. From the days when I could hardly dribble, to collegiate sport, all the way to Ireland I’ve been able to keep my number!
I am really proud of how my team played and we won both games! Ironically, we played Mary Immaculate college whom is coached by Tony Hehir (my Celtics coach) and my college Coach just so happens to be Michelle Hehir. Last year LIT and Mary I played in the finals and everyone joked about it being a husband and wife rivalry match. They are great coaches and luckily for me I get to play for both!
I’m looking forward to our season together. The ladies are supportive and encouraging which makes playing that much more fun! After my last college game in February, I never thought I’d get the opportunity to play organised basketball. Lacing up my shoes and putting on the uniform means so much to me. The basketball court has always been my safe haven and I wouldn’t be who I am today without the game. I am very blessed to get another year to play.
Here’s to the last season of my career!