Point guard Coley Ickes makes sure her teammates know she supports them on and off the court.
The Crowder College women's basketball point guard will now take her game to Oklahoma Wesleyan University in Bartlesville, Okla., when she continues her career at the next level.
Ickes, of Rocky Comfort, is a graduate of McDonald County High School. She joined Crowder College three years ago, playing on the Roughriders softball team before joining the basketball team for the next two years.
Ickes recently signed to the Oklahoma Wesleyan Lady Eagles team at a special event May 8 at Crowder.
Four other teammates also are advancing their careers. The five sophomores' cumulative grade point average is 3.5, according to Crowder Roughriders Coach Tina Wilson. All the sophomores are going on to play at the next level, a first in Wilson's 11-year history with the college.
Ickes started all 32 games this past season, averaging playing time of 30.2 minutes per game. Her free-throw percentage is 80.4, and her rebounds total 106.
The Roughrider Women's Basketball team achieved a 22-10 record for the season. Ickes contributed with 72 assists for the season, 78 defensive rebounds and 43 steals.
During the season, Ickes lifts weights three times a week and does conditioning twice a week.
Working hard is in her genes. Ickes comes from an athletic family and knows how important it is to push herself. She looked to her sister, Kirstie, who displayed a great deal of athleticism while playing softball. Though Ickes played softball at the collegiate level for one year, she admits she has played basketball "for as long as (she) can remember."
The basketball player grew up in Washburn, Mo., then moved to Rocky Comfort in high school.
Basketball has been her segue for building relationships. Her Crowder career has resulted in making life-long friends. She and her teammates had a strong connection, because "we're all there for the same reason," she said.
"You learn what they're like, as an individual. Spending time with each one, you build that relationship on and off the court," she said.
Playing as a point guard is a challenging yet rewarding position, Ickes said. "You can see what's going on, you can sometimes see things the coach can't," she said. "It's being a team leader and letting the others know I have their backs."
Her coach said the other players looked to Ickes for leadership. Ickes stepped up and provided a key role for the team.
"I can't say enough great things about Coley," she said. "She brought her work ethic to practice every single day."
Game time demonstrated Ickes' leadership by example.
"It was like having a coach on the floor," Wilson said.
Her coach is not surprised Ickes is taking her game to the next level. Though Ickes didn't disclose her injury, Wilson pointed out that Ickes played injured for her time at Crowder. She underwent surgery two weeks ago, and Wilson said she is anxious to see what Ickes brings to the court after she heals.
"She was phenomenal for us," Wilson said. "She's a humble kid. She's a great teammate and a great person as well.
"She was a joy to coach."
When Ickes joins the Wesleyan campus in August, she'll play in her favorite role as a point guard. She chose Oklahoma Wesleyan for several reasons, including the atmosphere and the curriculum.
"When I went for a visit, I got really excited," she said. "I love the campus. I think it will be a good fit for me."
Ickes' goal is to become a girls' basketball coach and pursue a health and physical education degree. She also plans to teach a subject as well, though she hasn't settled on a plan for that yet.
To gain additional experience, Ickes has served as a resident assistant for Crowder's Upward Bound program, working with high school students who are gaining college credit. Helping them make the transition and ensuring their time is fun-filled and a safe experience is the key, she said.
As she prepares for the next level in August, Ickes expects to someday be a tough -- but fair -- coach.
"I will be hard on them; it's all part of working hard," she said. "It's doing what's best for your team.
"I will do whatever it takes to win."General News on 06/14/2018
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