Wednesday, March 5, 2008


Steady Eddie.

That's what New Britain girls basketball coach Karen Byrne calls junior Monika Malec. Malec doesn't generate a lot of attention when the Hurricanes' great Symone Roberts is scoring 20, 25 and 30 points per game.

Malec isn't ripping down rebounds like driven sophomore center Tyler Kimball, and she doesn't scoot around the court like effervescent point guard Sarah Sideranko. Malec, Bell and "sixth man" Heather O'Bright are role players, the kind that every successful team needs. Byrne appreciates this very much, as do the regular fans who have watched the 'Canes win game after game.

Malec has the stuff to make medium-range shots and keeps her feet moving on defense. Bell is the best perimeter shooter on the team, plays masterfully on the defensive end and doesn't allow missed shots or mistakes fester. These girls will not make All-State or even All-CCC North but no team makes it to championship games without the kind of contributions they make.

Monika. Cassie. Heather. I just want you to know that my Herald colleague Ryan Pipke and I appreciate you, too.

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