NEW MADISON – It was a big day for 6 Tri-Village seniors and an unbelievable career day for one senior as the Patriots recognized them before the start of their game with Fort Recovery.
The Patriots would roll in the game posting a 69-24 win over the visiting Indians.
TV recognized their 6 seniors prior to the start of the contest. Those seniors were Delanee Gray, Caitlin Robison, Molly Scantland, Maddie Bennett, Chloe Godown and Meghan Downing.
It was a game never really in doubt as Tri-Village jumped on Fort Recovery early for a 27-6 advantage in the 1st quarter.
Rylee Sagester nailed 3 long-range bombs and Meghan Downing had 11 points in the opening frame.
Coming into the game Meghan needed 30 points to reach a 1,000 and no one considered the possibility she would reach the mark considering she had never scored 30 points in a game.
But it was becoming more obvious as the game continued it was shaping up to be a special day for the 6’2” senior.
The Patriots continued to roll in the 2nd period going up 47-15 at the half.
By the end of the 3rd quarter TV led 63-23 with a running clock and Downing had 22 points heading into the final frame.
Knowing how close Meghan was to 1,000 points coach Brad Gray left her in the game while freely subbing out the other starters and getting other seniors playing time.
By now the student section, home crowd and the bench were all cheering with every touch by Meghan and why not. She would score her 1,000 and 1,001 points on a post move to the basket like she has done many times capping an unbelievable career in her last home game.
It was a career high 31 points to go along with 12 rebounds, 6 blocks and 3 assists as the Patriots earned a 69-24 win over the Indians.
After a short celebration and a game ball presentation by coach Brad Gray, Meghan jogged over to her mom & dad to give them a big hug and the ball.
Meghan was all smiles after the game and talked about the significant milestone.
“It was really special for me; I’ve grown up with all these seniors and we’ve played together since third grade. So, it was just a special moment to get to play with them and have the type of game I had today,” Meghan said.
“For me to be able to follow in my sister’s footsteps and to be able to do what they did in their careers was also a great feeling,” she added.
Meghan’s sisters Allie and Maddie both eclipsed 1,000 points in their career making it a hat trick for Scott and Rochelle Downing; parents of the trio.
Allie is currently playing Division 1 basketball for the University of Northern Colorado. She played in the DII final four last season for Belmont Abbey.
Maddie is currently playing basketball at University of Northwestern Ohio.
When I posed the question if she was going to follow her sisters’ footsteps by playing basketball in College, Meghan smiled and said she would like to … but didn’t want to reveal any talks of where she might be going.
Meghan was appreciative of all the support she has received from the community and school over the years, but she also couldn’t have done it without parents.
“My mom and dad have been my greatest supporters even when going through trying times they have been there for me no matter what. They’ve taken me and my sisters to all our AAU games growing up and doing whatever we needed for basketball,” Meghan said.
Meghan became the 3rd Tri-Village girls’ player to reach 1,000 points this season with Rylee Sagester and Morgan Hunt reaching the mark during the season.
Coach Brad Gray was extremely happy for his senior center as well.
I’m just so proud of Meghan and the day she had, it was unbelievable she goes out with 31 points, 10-14 from the field and 11-for-12 from the free throw line, it doesn’t get much better than that. To be honest, we did not expect her to get to 1000 today I mean what better way to do that in your last home game on senior day, it will be something she’ll remember the rest of her life and I’ll certainly remember it as well.
Being that it was senior recognition late in the 4th quarter coach Gray took a time-out and put all 6 of his seniors out on the floor at the same time. When play resumed the officials assessed a technical foul for too many players on the floor, but it was a special tribute to send all 6 of them off the floor for one final round of applause.
Yes, it truly was a special day for 6 seniors and an unbelievable day for senior Meghan Downing.