As their final season comes to a close, two Lady Cougars reflect on their time at MVNU.
Seniors Megan Beidelman and Natalie Thomas dedicated four years to the women’s basketball team.
“Every coach dreams of having two seniors with the leadership of Meg and Nat,” Head Coach Amanda Short said. “ They both have great work ethic, they lead by example and they do what it takes to make the team better. They bring an energy to the court that is contagious.”
Looking back, the two seniors are thankful for the many memories and “sisters” they gained while in the program.
“The team has meant a lot to me and I think the main thing is family,” said Thomas. “I have made some of my best friends on this team.”
Beidelman echoed her sentiments adding that the team “helped me realize the value of friendship.”
The two seniors experienced “highs and lows” on and o the court but credit their teammates for being there “each step of the way.”
“I won’t remember the games or the wins and losses,” Thomas said. “But, I’ll remember the friendships and the hard work we put in together.”
During their time at MVNU, the women’s basketball program took two trips, one to Chicago and the other to Arizona.
“These two trips were by far the highlights of my career here,” said Beidelman. “I was able to grow in my relationships with my teammates as well as going 2-0 in both Chicago and Arizona.”
Thomas adds that narrowing all the memories of four years into just one or two highlights is impossible. However, “the most important thing I will remember is the friendships I have made and the silly and dumb stuff we do,” said Thomas.
While at MVNU Thomas has been a key defensive player for the Lady Cougars, known for her ability to draw offensive fouls in the post. Coming off the bench, Thomas brings energy and power to the Lady Cougars’ defense.
Beidelman ends her career ranked h in the NAIA Division II total rebounds and seventh in total rebounds per game this season. She sits at eighth for offensive rebounds and 11th for defensive rebounds in the nation.
During her junior year Beidelman became the 24th Lady Cougar to surpass 1,000 career points with a 21-point game against Huntington University on Feb. 13, 2016.
Short also praised Beidelman and Thomas for their character.
“They not only help us be successful on the court but they are both great students and above all great godly women who set a wonderful example of what an MVNU women’s basketball player should be,” said Short.
As they suit up for their final regular season game, the two seniors hope to see their teammates embrace the time they have left.
“Have fun, be goofy,” said Beidelman. “But, most of all don’t take a day o , give your best everyday and it will make you a better teammate and will allow you to look back and know that you did everything you could to be your best.”
Thomas hopes the women will “cherish every single moment” as a Lady Cougar, on and off the court.
Thomas will graduate with a degree in social work and plans to get her master’s in counseling. Her hope is to become a high school or college counselor while coaching basketball.
Beidelman will finish with a degree in middle school math and science education. She is interested in coaching, teaching and possibly earning her graduate degree.