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SMC Basketball

Squad sees signs of growth after rough season

| Friday, May 18, 2018

It was a season of improvement for Saint Mary’s, who finished the season tied for seventh place in the MIAA conference.

The season was one plagued with losing stretches for the Belles (6-19, 3-13 MIAA), Belles head coach Melissa Makielski described the 2017-18 season as one of development.

“This season was a season of growth,” Makielski said. “We fought every day to improve and at the end of the season, we were competing with the top teams in our conference.”

The season of growth manifested itself for the team in its record, as the Belles tripled their total win total from the previous season after improving from 2-23, with just one conference win to a season with six wins. Their wins came against John Carroll, Alma College, Anderson University, Olivet, Kalamazoo and Illinois Tech. Makielski knows the team got through the up and down season by leaning on one another during rough stretches.

“The team [got] through the highs and lows of the season together. They are a close group who all have the same goals in mind and want to challenge each other,” Makielski said. “Basketball players on any team know that they are going to go through highs and lows each season. We were fortunate this season to have a group of players who bonded together to get through the good and bad times with each other.”

At the end of the season the Belles graduated three seniors — Kelsey Trimble, Gabby Crown and captain Gabby Diamond — a group Makielski remembers as a hard-working and selfless senior class.

“This senior class set a solid foundation of hard work and commitment to this program,” Makielski said. “We will miss their dedication and willingness to put the team first. They were selfless and were willing to sacrifice themselves for the good of the team.”

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