By ERIC A. HOWALD
Of the Keizertimes
There came a point last season when Derick Handley, head coach of the girls varsity basketball team, gave then-junior Madi Hingston an ultimatum.
“Madi is great at sharing the ball with her teammates – that’s kind of the way she operates – but her unwillingness to shoot held us back at times,” said Handley. “We finally told her shoot the ball or you’re not going to play any more.”
Hingston started shooting, and shooting, and shooting. She shot her way to a new single-season McNary record for three-point goals.
“The old record was 37 and Madi had more than 60,” Handley said.
Those skills have earned her a spot on the roster at Seattle Pacific University. Hingston signed a letter of intent to play for the Division II Falcons at a ceremony Tuesday, Nov. 17, at McNary.
“There was a lot that went into picking them,” said Hingston. “There’s a good balance between basketball and education at the school. It will be a smaller class size and have a more community feel. They’ve also always been pretty strong basketball-wise.”
In addition to her record-setting three-point season, Hingston averaged 13 points per game, four rebounds per game and was the team’s assist leader, all as a junior.
As much as Handley was relieved to see Hingston step up and shoot, he said her approach to the game is equally appreciated.
“Madi’s personality is getting everybody involved early on even though she can be the game leader, she has a great understanding of the game in that way,” Handley said.
Hingston plans to study business at the school with an emphasis on sports marketing.
She’ll be one of only two freshmen joining the Seattle Pacific roster, but said she’s looking forward to a new school, new teammates and everything that comes with college.
“I feel like it will be totally different and a new challenge, and I’m excited for all of it,” she said. “This season, I just want to work on my leadership and being more aggressive. There’s always room for improvement.”