Bison Athlete of the Week: Claire DeBoer ’17, Women’s Basketball

Devan Schulte, Senior Writer

The women’s basketball team is off to a fantastic start in their 2015-2016 campaign, thanks largely to the outstanding efforts of forward Claire DeBoer ’17. The Grosse Pointe, Mich. native led the Bison with 19 points, seven rebounds, and went seven-for-10 in field goal attempts in the team’s impressive 71-45 win against Mount St. Mary’s on Nov. 24. The win marked the Orange and Blue’s most successful start in 15 years, as the team stood at 4-1 after the victory.

Despite a tough defeat at Canisius on Nov. 29, DeBoer exemplified strong determination during the course of the match, as she nearly propelled the team to a comeback from a 13-point deficit. DeBoer once again led the team with 24 points and 12 rebounds, marking her 12th double-double in her three seasons on the Orange and Blue. Although it was a difficult loss, DeBoer remains positive.

“We learned that we can’t just come in and expect to win against teams even though we have been winning by large margins, and also that we need to bring the same intensity and toughness to each game no matter which team we are playing,” DeBoer said.

The forward is accustomed to outstanding accomplishments, as she has proved to be a vital part of the Orange and Blue’s offensive and defensive success since her rookie campaign. After her first year as a Bison, DeBoer was named Patriot League Rookie of the Year, marking the sixth time in program history that a Bison was handed this prestigious award. The accolades from her first season were astounding, as she received eight Patriot League Rookie of the Week awards, registered four double-doubles, and was selected to the Patriot League All-Rookie team at the conclusion of the season. She averaged 9.8 points and 6.7 rebounds on the season and scored a career-high 24 points against a tough competitor, Colgate.

Her success continued into her sophomore campaign, as DeBoer was voted Second Team All-Patriot League after ranking sixth in the Patriot League for rebounds (7.6), seventh in field goal percentage (.459), as well as in offensive and defensive rebounding (2.6 and 5.0 respectively), eighth in free throw percentage (.702), and 12th in scoring (11.3).

Entering her third season, DeBoer was named as a member of the Preseason All-Patriot League squad and she has lived up to the league’s expectations thus far. She currently ranks fourth in the league for rebounding (9.4) and seventh in scoring (15.6). The competitive season has just begun, so DeBoer recognizes how much time is still left to strive for a championship.

“Our overarching team goal for the season is definitely to win the Patriot League and also the Patriot League Championship. For my personal goal, I came in wanting to be more effective outside of the paint and I wanted to be more confident to shoot the ball in general,” DeBoer said.

In order to accomplish these goals, DeBoer recognizes the importance of putting in extra time and effort outside of practice. As an upperclassman leader, she advises younger players to keep working hard and to take extra time to improve their individual skill-sets on the court. This surplus dedication is hugely responsible for the success that DeBoer has achieved, as she received similar advice and support from the upperclassmen when she was new to the program.

“I looked up to Audrey Dotson ’15 tremendously my past two years, especially as a fellow post player, so without her this year I feel like I need to step up to try to be as dominant of not only a player on the court, but also a leader on and off the floor,” DeBoer said.

Thus far into her junior season, DeBoer has stepped up to play a leadership role on the squad and she will continue to do so in order to help the team produce results. With four games left before conference play commences, the Bison will look to continue improving with hopes of peaking come early 2016. The team takes on Fairleigh Dickinson on Dec. 4 at 7 p.m. in Sojka Pavilion and UMBC Dec. 8 on the road in Baltimore with the hopes of moving forward towards their ultimate goal: a Patriot League Championship.

2015 Statistics:

.494 FG Percentage

.364 3FG Percentage

.771 FT Percentage

66 Rebounds

109 Points

 

 

 

 

 

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