By Megan Arnoldy, Class of 2014
The change of seasons from summer to fall comes with a number of different things: pumpkin spice lattes, brisk mornings, colorful leaves, and of course, basketball season. As many students around campus get excited for the holiday season, the George Fox women’s basketball team gets ready to lace up for preseason games. October and November mark the start of basketball season and we couldn’t be happier.
As I step onto the court I am reminded of the success that we have had during my three years at Fox and I am hopeful for another memorable season. After experiencing the elite eight my freshman year and the national championship game my sophomore year, I think it’s safe to say I want to be competing in March again. Traveling and playing in the national tournament is unlike anything that I’ve ever participated in during my basketball career. It tops high school state tournaments, AAU basketball and regular season games by far. The memories and experiences made while playing in the national championship are things that I’ll never forget.
My experience at Fox has not only benefited me as an athlete, but it has also prepared me for life after graduation. It has taught me the essence of hard work and perseverance as well as mental toughness. I have quickly learned the importance of time management and efficiency. More importantly, I have been blessed with teammates who have pushed me to become a better woman of Christ and a community that has supported us time and time again.
I will never forget coming home from the national championship game. We had lost the game to Illinois Wesleyan by nine points and were pretty worn out by the time we had landed in Portland. We were told that there was going to be a parade for us once we got back into Newberg, and I can remember being less than excited for it, as I didn’t really want to see anyone or talk to anyone about the game. We arrived in Newberg and met a number of Newberg fire fighters and police officers and all loaded up on a classic fire engine before being escorted through town. My attitude about the parade completely changed after seeing the number of people lining the streets welcoming us home with waves, signs and smiles. It was so incredible to see the amount of support we had at home no matter what the outcome of the game was.
Overall, my experience as a George Fox Bruin has been so much more than I could have ever anticipated coming in as a freshman. Being a student athlete at Fox has shaped me into the person that I am today, and I will continue to use what I have learned well after basketball season ends.