Sports Person of the Week
Kelly’s Presence in the Paint Proves Huge
Senior captain Alex Kelly earned All-Shoreline Conference Honorable Mention recognition for her solid play at the center position with the Morgan girls’ basketball team this winter. (Photo courtesy of Alex Kelly )
The Morgan girls’ basketball team enjoyed a successful season this winter, and one of the biggest keys to that success was the performance of senior captain center Alex Kelly. Alex excelled as a defensive stopper for a Huskies’ club that posted a record of 11-4 and advanced to the championship game of the Shoreline Conference Tournament for the second-straight year.
At 5 feet, 11 inches tall, Alex provided quite a presence in the paint for Morgan throughout the past four seasons. Alex put in plenty of work in order to hone her skills down low and feels happy to have helped the Huskies establish themselves as a perennial contender.
“I work hard during practice and give it my all during games. I try to respond to feedback from my coaches and fix anything that I might need to with my game,” Alex says. “Although I won’t be playing for Morgan next year, I really hope to see the team go to the championship again and win this time. There is so much talent on the team, and I think they have a really good chance of winning it all. And when they make it that far, I will definitely be there watching and cheering them on.”
Alex put together some solid playoff performances to help Morgan reach the Shoreline Conference final this year. When the Huskies faced Westbrook in the quarterfinal round, Alex grabbed 12 rebounds and scored four points to lift Morgan to a 51-38 victory. Then in the semis, Alex had another big game by recording 14 boards to go with five blocks, one assist, and one steal in a 50-37 win over Cromwell.
“I am happy I am able to contribute to the team this way with rebounding and blocking shots,” says Alex.
Head Coach Caitlin Woods describes Alex as a vital component behind what the Huskies achieved in the recent season. Woods says that Alex wreaked havoc for Morgan on the defensive end of the floor, while also making some timely contributions on offense.
“Alex dominates the team’s defensive force as a shot-blocking phenom and has been a powerful rebounder throughout her basketball career. On a team with big-time scorers, she proved herself as an offensive threat, especially in big games. Her offensive contributions have been pivotal for the team,” says Woods. “Alex ended her career as a dynamic and versatile player, but also as a terrific leader and senior captain. She will be missed immensely by her coaches and teammates.”
Alex started playing basketball when she was six years old. Alex’s parents signed her up because she was tall at an early age, and she wound up thoroughly enjoying the sport.
In addition to basketball, Alex also competed for Morgan girls’ volleyball team, earning All-Shoreline Conference Second Team accolades last fall. This winter, Alex garnered All-Shoreline Honorable Mention for her performance on the basketball court.
“I have been playing basketball for 11 years. My parents wanted me to play and got me interested because I was so tall,” Alex says. “I also play volleyball and like to spend time with my family and friends. I’m involved in a few clubs at school, but sports take up a lot of my time.”
Alex will always cherish the Huskies’ memorable runs to the Shoreline Conference final in each of the past two seasons. She will never forget when Morgan defeated Cromwell by a 41-40 score on a buzzer-beater in the semifinals of the 2020 tournament. Alex loves being able to share those types of moments with the Huskies’ faithful fan base.
“My favorite moment as a player was probably when we won the semifinal game last year against Cromwell. I love those high-intensity, really close games when you have a huge student section and win with a buzzer-beater shot,” says Alex. “My favorite aspect of the sport is the way it brings our community together. Before COVID, we would have people of all different ages coming to the games to support the players and watch. It’s a big deal at our school and helps bring up school spirit a lot.”
Alex has had a great time playing sports for Morgan these past few years. Now, Alex is starting to get ready for the next chapter of her life by taking on some new endeavors in college.
“I’m still deciding on my top three schools, so I’m not completely sure where I’ll be going, but I will be majoring in exercise science no matter what,” Alex says. “I’m probably most excited to make new friends and get the college experience.”