Seniors reflect on their final season

The girls’ varsity basketball team is less than two weeks away from playing their first-round state playoff game. This tends to be an emotional time for seniors, as most of them are wrapping up their last high school basketball games ever. There are five seniors on the team this year, two of them are currently out with knee injuries. With a tremendous amount of talent on the team, the Wildcats look to make a deep run at Gill Coliseum, where the 5A State Tournament will be held March 7-9. Emily Scanlan said, “With our drive and charisma I know my team wants to go all the way.”

Reflecting on their high school basketball career, the girls shared some of their most memorable experiences being a part of the basketball team. Hannah McKinney said, “I loved our California trip because we got to play some of the best competition and bonded a lot together.” Scanlan said her favorite memory was when “We beat La Salle and Duke came in the locker room and we drenched him and the whole room with water.” But it wasn’t just the unique experiences that were something to remember, it was the relationships within this special group of girls. Reese Timm said, “The girls felt like my family from the first day I walked into the gym.”

Basketball hasn’t just made an impact on these seniors in the gym, but also to them as people outside the gym. Teagan McNamee shared, “Justin Duke (head coach) is one of my biggest role models and he has taught me not only to be a better player but a better person.” A lot of life lessons are learned through sports and not just by these five players. “Basketball brought me closer to a lot of people who taught me how to work hard throughout high school,” McKinney said.

What is most impressive about this group of seniors is that all of them have the potential to play at the collegiate level. Four out of the five seniors on this team are strongly considering playing in college. McNamee will be attending Pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon where she will play soccer as well as continuing her basketball career. McKinney will play basketball and has narrowed down her decision to a handful of schools. The last two are still exploring their options on where they would like to play and what feels like the best fit for them both athletically and academically.

There are several people the seniors would like to thank for making their basketball career one they will cherish for the rest of their lives. Reese Timm said, “I wouldn’t be able to play without the support of my parents, friends, and coaches because they are the reason I am able to do what I do.” There are a lot of behind the scenes in the game of basketball, that allows each and every player to reach their full potential. McNamee said, “My grandpa has hugely impacted me because he is very knowledgeable and has been at every game.” Family means a great deal to McKinney especially, “my mom has shown me support through anything and everything and encouraged me to always work hard for what I want.”

Many will agree that this time in your life flies by. Justin Duke has built a very strong program over the past four years in Wilsonville that will continue to be successful for many years to come. As this group of seniors steps down, they had some advice to give to the younger players. Mckinney said, “leave everything you can out on the court because you never know which game may be your last.” Timm and Scanlan have learned this lesson first hand and would do anything to be back on the court during this exciting time. Timm also said, “work your hardest and make the most of every moment.”

You can come to watch your seniors play in their last league game of the season against Parkrose on Tuesday, February 26th at Wilsonville High School. Pack the stands to celebrate this amazing group of girls.