WEST WARWICK- As she stood at the free throw line late in the second half with her team out in front 51-45, Brooke Young had more on her mind than simply extending the Wizards’ lead. With 986 career points under her belt entering the night, the junior had captured the attention of everyone in the crowd who had come to see history made. It would take nearly the entire game for her do so, but her free throw inside the final three minutes officially sealed the deal. The made basket was her 14th point of the night, giving her exactly 1000 for her career. The game was stopped temporarily as Young was embraced by her teammates and coaches for becoming just the 11th player in West Warwick girls basketball history to reach the milestone. Young’s gratitude extended to her family as well, as she made her way over to the sidelines where she was embraced by her parents Jeff and Janet.
Showing classiness and an appreciation for the game, the visiting Tigers stood and applauded as well before the game resumed. Young would miss the following free throw, but it proved to be of no cost, as she and the rest of the Wizards went on to win by a 57-47 final. Head coach Mike Francois elected to call a timeout with just 24 seconds remming so that he could give Young one more moment of recognition. He pulled her from the game so that the near capacity crowd was able to rise once more and give her a second standing ovation.
The night was made even more special for Young given the magnitude of the game from a community standpoint. With freshman Alexis Field’s recent Leukemia diagnosis, the game on Monday night saw a tremendous outpouring of support from the community, both financially and symbolically. For Young to be able to reach the 1000 point milestone on a night already filled with emotion made it that much more special, though at the same time, nerve-wracking.
“It was a big game and I wanted to win it for Alexis,” she said.
“There are tons of people here, so I was a little nervous. We really wanted to win for her. This is her night, so I’m glad we won for her,” she said.
Young also treasured the moment she got to spend with her parents on the sidelines, knowing how much it means to them as well.
“My mom doesn’t get to come to a lot of games, so it was really great to have her here,” she said.
Jeff Young expressed his profound pride in his daughter’s accomplishment after the game, knowing that she still has a full year left in her career to add to her already impressive point total.
“I am so proud of my daughter Brooke. For all she has to go through with the family affairs. She’s so supportive, so smart, so pretty, I just couldn’t be happier.”
While there were some tense moments in the game, Mr. Young knew that at some point or another his daughter would reach the 1000 point mark. He was just glad that it was that night.
“I knew she had another year left, so I knew she was going to get it. I couldn’t be prouder. She’s a straight A student and a kickbutt daughter. I love her to death and I made my wife’s night tonight and my daughter’s night tonight.”
It was not clear until the end of the game if in fact Young would reach the 1000 point mark or not. The junior netted 8 points by the half, but did not score her first points of the second half until nearly seven minutes had gone by. A three-pointer with 7:16 remaining pulled her to within a single point of the mark, as each shot she took from there drew a reaction from the entire crowd. After missing a pair of threes, she would get the chance to clinch the deal at the free throw line, which is where she had netted 6 of her fist 13 points. Her first shot went in and the rest was history.