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Junior Reaches 1,000-point Milestone

Junior+Reaches+1%2C000-point+Milestone
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fBMFbNoHChE

With just under three minutes left in the 3rd quarter, the Ithaca College women’s basketball team was leading St. Lawrence University 41–38, on Feb. 9. Junior forward Cassidy O’Malley was just two points away from reaching 1,000 career points in a Bomber uniform. 

O’Malley got the rebound and had a fast break down the court. She stopped in the paint, underneath the basket,and took a jump shot. Once the shot went in, her team knew she had broken 1,000. She is the 14th player in program history to reach this milestone. 

O’Malley takes a jump shot in the paint in the team’s game against Vassar College on November 30, 2018. The Bombers defeated the Brewers 68–54.
(Photo Courtesy of Ithaca College Bombers’ Instagram)

“I knew going into the game that I needed 15 points to get it,” O’Malley, an integrated marketing communications major, said. “It was kind of a close game and it was such an intense game with St. Lawrence so I had no idea where I was. Once I hit the jump shot, I heard our side of the benches get a little bit noisier than usual and I knew that was it.”

It’s an impressive career milestone for O’Malley, who scored just 155 points during her first year at IC. During her sophomore year, she bounced back to lead the team in points scoring 494 on the season. Coming into her junior year, O’Malley needed to score more than 351 points to reach the 1,000 point mark. 

“We knew before the game and we knew how many she needed but we didn’t know how many she had at the time,” said senior guard Annie Giannone. “I think afterwards when we found out she had gotten 1,000 we were all very happy for her. I mean it’s a huge accomplishment, and it goes a long way with her character, and she deserves it more than anyone I know. It was just cool to see a good thing happen to a good person.”

Giannone and O’Malley have been playing together on the team for the past three years, forming a dominant guard-forward relationship. Their friendship off the court, said Giannone, has really helped their chemistry during practices and games.

O’Malley first heard about Ithaca College after women’s basketball head coach Dan Raymond watched her play for a few summers through her AAU team. Raymond invited O’Malley during her senior year of high school to tour campus and take part in a clinic. O’Malley said she knew almost instantly after stepping foot on campus the IC was the place for her.

Raymond said that O’Malley’s leadership skills have developed significantly this year.

“I think a lot of that can be seen on the court. Maybe she’s not scoring as much, but she’s doing all these other things that are really important to us,” Raymond said. “She’s rebounding better, she’s passing the ball better, she’s playing great defense. Everything she does has gotten one step better than it was last year.”

O’Malley takes a shot around the three-point line during the team’s scrimmage at practice February 19 in Ben Light Gymnasium.
(Samantha Cavalli/Ithaca Week)

This season, O’Malley has averaged 14.7 points per game, 60 assists, 37 steals, and averages 5.7 rebounds. She currently leads the team again this season in scoring with 368 points so far.O’Malley said that there are more accomplishments for her to come.

“I do think that this is, like, really big for me,” O’Malley said “I’m super happy that it happened for me in my junior year specifically. Personal accomplishments aren’t much. I think us winning the Liberty League this weekend would mean more to me than that.”

Giannone said O’Malley has been a pleasure to have on the team because she brings a lot of energy on and off the court.

“She’s hysterical so she brings that kind of like laughter and humor to the team, which I think we need sometimes,” Giannone said. “I just think her skill set makes everyone else work harder because she is obviously so good and it is just a pleasure to have her on the team with us.”

The women’s basketball team will play in the Liberty League playoffs, a tournament which the team will host at IC’s Ben Light Gymnasium. The Bombers will take on William Smith College at noon on Feb. 23.

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