The Torch

I’ve been playing basketball since I was four years old, but sometime in high school was when I knew I really wanted to play at the college level. I was in the gym all the time and I wanted to play basketball no matter what. It was my favorite hobby. I always wanted to come to college and work hard. Being at a junior college (JUCO) school [Northwest Mississippi Community College] in the beginning of my career, that was a grind. Coming from JUCO and just grinding and then moving up to Division II [at Glenville State] gave me that dream to move up one more division and play Division I basketball. 

I was drawn to Valpo because of the love the coaches showed me. I had broken my foot at my previous school, so when I entered the transfer portal I didn’t have many options. Coach [Matt] Lottich emailed me, however, and told me how bad he wanted me even when I had a broken foot.

My coaches and teammates have always been there for me. Even at the beginning of the year, I wasn’t going to play because my back was messed up, but everyone was always here for me and constantly pushing me to be a better player. My favorite memory from this season was when I scored the game winner against James Madison earlier this year. We were already in overtime, and I got the ball. Our team had cleared everybody out, and I went down and scored. Everybody just went crazy; it was great. 

As a person, I have grown to be more team-oriented while at Valpo. I’ve been doing a lot more stuff with the team outside of basketball. As a player, everyone here has helped me develop my communication, and I’ve grown a ton on the defensive side. One thing I want people to know is that the season is not over yet. We’re still working and looking to make a run soon in the Missouri Valley Conference tournament. 

Once my time at Valpo comes to an end, I definitely want to play professionally. So, I’m working to try to achieve that dream soon after I graduate. I’m just thankful for this experience. It’s been a rocky one, going from two different JUCO’s, to a Division II, to here, but I’m just really grateful to be here and be playing with everyone.


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