- February 8, 2023
As Sullivan County’s MyKenzie Malacusky pulled up during the closing seconds of the third quarter most in attendance knew the shot could be history for the program. Malacusky controlled the pass from her teammate, zoned in on the hoop, and let a shot fly as the clock fell under ten seconds. The ball left no
As Sullivan County’s MyKenzie Malacusky pulled up during the closing seconds of the third quarter most in attendance knew the shot could be history for the program.
Malacusky controlled the pass from her teammate, zoned in on the hoop, and let a shot fly as the clock fell under ten seconds. The ball left no doubt as to the shot’s accuracy as it barely touched the rim, flying through the net and crashing to the floor.
The bucket might have seemed like just another one during a big win for the Griffins, but it stood as the final three points Malacusky needed to cross the 1,000-point barrier.
“It’s breathtaking,” Malacusky said. “It’s been a milestone of mine since I was younger. I’ve been playing AAU and working hard all through summers. Having this moment pays off. Without all the hard work and the hard work of my team I would have never had a moment like this.”
It was clear Malacusky could feel the pressure early as she started the game just 23 points shy of the intended mark. She missed her first four shots from the floor and looked rushed throughout the opening minutes of the game.
It wasn’t just her shooting either. She missed teammates with passes and appeared nervous and tight each time she touched the ball.
“Mostly it was at halftime,” Malacusky said of her teammates and coaches settling her down. “They gave me the talk at halftime and told me they had full confidence in me. They told me they had my back. They’ve supported me all along, and I couldn’t have accomplished this milestone without them helping me.”
She looked much more confident in her abilities throughout the third quarter. She put herself in position to reach the milestone, and with just about 20 seconds left in the quarter, she was only three points shy of the mark.
She hit a quick pull-up two for her first points and went on to connect with three of her next four attempts from the floor. She finished the first half with ten points on four-of-nine shooting with just one free throw on five chances. She even missed on a three-point chance late in the second half when she was fouled, but still managed to make the shot from the floor.
The poor shooting performance was quickly forgotten as Malacusky went on a tear throughout the third quarter. She hit all four of her chances from the floor and made four of her seven attempts from the foul line.
“They eased me into it and got me to do what I needed to do,” Malacusky said. “I work better under pressure. It’s always been that way. I don’t know why.”
The offensive outburst put her right in position to score the final points she needed to reach 1,000. Once she made the shot the Sullivan County bench cleared as her teammates cheered and hugged Malacusky.
A special moment happened when Malacusky was hugged by her coach and then her mother and father as she was presented with the game ball.
“I don’t really have words for it,” Sullivan County coach Kurt Parrish said. “The kid works hard. She’s a leader to the young kids all the way through. Just her overall motivation for herself is great. Overall she’s a true team leader.”
Malacusky posed for pictures well after the game ended as her friends and family celebrated the accomplishment. Malacusky will forever be a part of the history books for Sullivan County’s program. It was fitting the Griffins were able to honor Malacusky’s accomplishment with a big win over Montgomery.
“Everyone said this could be a bug on my shoulders,” Malacusky said. “They told me not to go into every game trying to force it or score so many points. Just play my game and work with your team. I’ve still been focusing on my assists and letting the points come to me. After I graduate, I want the girls to be fully confident too. They can accomplish the same things I have. They will. They are hard workers.”1 comment