By Ben Murphy
Her last name couldn’t be more fitting. For the last three winters Clare junior Lindsay Winter has been a dominating force in the girls basketball scene. Now, with a season and a half left to play in her high school career she has passed the 1000 career point mark.
“It was definitely a goal that I have been working on since the beginning of high school,” Winter, who has since reached 1023 career points said. “It wouldn’t be possible without the support of everyone, my teammates, parents and coaches. It’s pretty cool but a lot of the credit should go to my team too.”
Winter, a guard averaged 14 points a game as a freshman before improving that to 18 as a sophomore. This season she has taken her game to another level, averaging 25 points a game along with six rebounds and four assists per contest.
“Lindsay is a scorer but she is a complete player,” Clare head coach Matt Rodenbo, who added Winter has a 4.0 GPA said. “She passes the ball well and is an excellent defender. Even though she is not the biggest player on the court she usually gets five-to-10 rebounds a night. Lindsay is strong and has very good basketball instincts.”
Rodenbo went on to add that Beth Kindel holds the school record for 1373 points in a career, but feels at this pace, Winter could break the mark early next season.
“She is as good as she is because she spends numerous hours in the gym, working on her game,” he said. “You cannot keep this kid out of the gym which you love to see as a coach. She is constantly striving to improve in all aspects of the game. She is never content and is a competitor. She is extremely coachable. These attributes lead to her constantly improving in all areas.”
Though her big scoring nights have garnered her the most attention, Winter doesn’t want to known as a one-note basketball player.
“Rebounding, passing, defense it all helps,” she said. “Rebounding you get putback shots and passing opens up other people. It’s an overall game so you have to be able to do each and every aspect of it.”
Winter isn’t about to hog the spotlight either, pointing out that her team is 10-1 overall, 8-0 in the Jack Pine Conference and controlling their own destiny en route to their third straight league title.
“We’ve had a good year, we have a lot of big goals and we know that we have to keep working hard for them,” she said. “We’ve been playing together since we were little kids. We think that this is our year and we want to make the most of it.
“Our goal is to win conference, districts, regionals, there’s no limit honestly to what we can do,” Winter added. “We just want to make sure that we can make the most of our year and not end it too soon.”
A hard lesson learned from last year was the team’s opening round district loss to Pine-River. Winter is hopeful that the team can use that experience as a positive.
“We didn’t forget about that and we don’t want to have that feeling again,” Winter said. “It definitely motivates us to say that we lost last year when we shouldn’t have and we don’t want that to happen again.”
One scary thought for area teams is that due to having two separate knee surgeries, she has had just one summer in her high school career where she hasn’t been rehabing. Last summer she focused entirely on basketball, something she plans to do again this summer.
“I put a lot of time into basketball, I spent my whole summer doing it, it’s a year long thing,” she said, adding she plays for an A.A.U team as well. “You put a lot of time in but the rewards of it are pretty great.
“I just want to keep improving on everything,” Winter added. “A quicker shot, quickness (on the court), you just always want to become more powerful and stronger. It’s not just one specific thing, overall you just want to keep improving.”