MEET THE MAVS

A CELEBRATION FOR TWO

By Cora Olsen

MEET THE MAVS

This Kidwell-sponsored content series highlights the unique stories of UNO student-athletes that have built a special connection to our city and community.

MEET THE MAVS

This Kidwell-sponsored content series highlights the unique stories of UNO student-athletes that have built a special connection to our city and community.

This series is brought to you by United Dairy Industry of Michigan.

The candles were lit, illuminating the cake, all set for a celebration.

It was a special day marked not only my dad’s birthday but also the day I received the offer from UNO.

While the decorations were intended for him, they unexpectedly doubled as a backdrop for my achievement.

What began as a birthday festivity seamlessly morphed into an acknowledgment of my DI offer — a dream realized for all of us.

I like to believe it was perhaps the best birthday gift I could give to my dad, too.

I was so grateful to be given the opportunity to play for my hometown team.

Even better, my family and friends would be close by to watch me play.

That’s something not many people get to experience, and I cherish every moment of it.

I credit my parents for instilling the love and passion I have for basketball.

It goes without saying that none of this would be possible without them.

From the early days of my career to where I am now, their support has been unwavering, and their impact immeasurable.

I couldn’t have asked for better parents.

Early Days in Basketball

My dad was the one who introduced me to basketball. I was a bit of a clumsy kid, so it wasn’t my first choice when it came to sports.

Initially, I went the dance route, but one day, a friend of mine suggested starting a team at the Y. So, my dad and her dad became our coaches, and we created a team.

We played for a few years at the Y, then moved on to AAU, where my dad continued to be my coach.

I’ll be honest, we definitely butted heads a lot.

Looking back on it, though, it was a lot of fun.

It’s an experience I would do over in a heartbeat.

Now, my dad’s still my coach, but in a different way.

After every game, we break it down and talk about it.

He’s got that “I’m your coach” mentality, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

My parents have been such a huge influence on my career. They’ve always been there for me, win or lose, good game or bad.

Their love and support have been the driving force behind everything I’ve accomplished, and I’m forever grateful for them.

I credit my parents for instilling the love and passion I have for basketball. It goes without saying that none of this would be possible without them. From the early days of my career to where I am now, their support has been unwavering, and their impact immeasurable. I couldn't have asked for better parents.

The start of my college days

When I was looking at colleges, I knew I wanted to stay close to home. Family means everything to me, and having them at my games has always been important.

The goals that Coach Banks had for the team and the culture she was building at UNO definitely attracted me to the program.

I’ve always been a big fan of women’s sports, and I think Omaha is a great city for women’s basketball. The support here is truly special, and I’m honored to be a part of it.

The transition from high school to college was definitely a challenge, but I felt like my coaches and teammates did a great job of preparing me.

One thing that really helped me was gaining confidence.

It’s tough coming into a new team and feeling like you have something to prove, but my teammates and coaches have been so supportive and encouraging.

I still have a lot of work to do to reach my full potential, but knowing that they believe in me really helps.

I’ve learned so much this season, and I’m excited to continue growing as a player.

The Future

As I look to the future, I hope to continue improving my game. My outside shot has always been a work in progress, so that’s something I want to focus on.

I also want to do everything I can to help the team be successful.

Hanging the first banner in the gym would be a dream come true, and I’m so excited to work on this alongside my friends and teammates.

I want to be a part of the first team in school history to win a conference championship and make it to the NCAA Tournament.

I know it won’t be easy, but I think we have the team to do it.

I have nothing but love and respect for my team, coaches, and the entire UNO community. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for this team.

I hope to put UNO women’s basketball on the map and accomplish things that have never been done before. I believe in our team and our coaches, and I know we can achieve great things together.

At the end of the day, I have to give so much credit to my family and friends.

They’ve been in the stands supporting me every step of the way.

From high school to college, their constant support has motivated me to constantly pursue better.

I owe many thanks to them for where I am today and where I hope to be tomorrow.