Hadrick has the ball at the top of the key... She fakes left, drives right... A Brown defender tries to cut her off...gets there too late...bumps Hadrick on the hip... Hadrick keeps here eye on the basket and kisses the ball off the glass for the bucket and foul... The crowd erupts...
For Co-Captain Dina Hadrick, moments like this one last Saturday against the Bruins have been few and far between. The senior guard and two-time Crimson captain has waited for her moment, for her chance to establish herself as the player she knows she can be.
For Hadrick, it's not about ego, glory or publicity. It's about being an athlete, about playing the sport of basketball.
"All my life I've placed so much importance on basketball," Hadrick says. "There's going to be a huge gap in my life when it's over. I don't know how I'm going to fill it, but it's time to go on."
"It's almost time, anyway. With three games remaining, Hadrick's career, which reaily began when she first picked up a ball at age 11, is nearing an end. But it will be hard for Hadrick to get away from the game, especially at home.
A New Jersey native, Hadrick moved to Indiana when she was 12, just in time to be indoctrinated with Hoosier hoops. In Indiana, basketball is not just a sport--it's a way of life. As a freshman, Hadrick's Crown Point High School team went to the state final. She played on the junior varsity squad that year.
Crown Point captured the state championship the following year, and Hadrick--after moving up from the JV squad midway through the season--was the first guard off the bench in what she calls one of her greatest memories--playing the championship game in front of 13,000 fans at Market Square Arena.
By her senior year, Hadrick was averaging twenty points per game, and although her team only made it to the regional finals, Hadrick was ranked in Indiana's Senior Top-40 and was invited to the Indiana All-Star Team tryouts. She was the only Crown Point player ever to receive this honor, though she did not make the team.
"At first, I had a lot of bitter feelings about it," Hadrick says. "I sort of took everyone by surprise. Basketball in Indiana is very politcal. If you weren't pushed as a freshman or sophomore, if you never got a lot of press, it was tough. I basically feel what I did in my senior year, I did on my own."
Like many high school standouts, Hadrick was forced to start from the bottom after arriving at Harvard. The Crimson had posted a 21-5 record the previous season.
"When Dina came in, we had a strong senior class that had just come off an Ivy title," Delaney Smith says. "Dina is a two-guard. If I put you in as a two guard, you have to school, and Dina would not shoot."
The opportunity to shoot, however, was not always there, Hadrick points out. Although she received increased playing time during her sophomore season, it was classmates Beth Wambach, Jen Mazanee, and Heidi Kosh that stole the show.
Kosh was emerging as the next floor leader, Mazanee moved into the starting lineup at the forward position and Wambach averaged 9.3 points-per-game of the bench.