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The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Q&A: Senior Wildcats reflect on time at Chico State

Senior guard Annie Ward, right, attempts a shot against a Cal State L.A. defender on Jan. 30 in Acker Gym. Photo credit: Catalina Friz

It is the important people and impactful moments that make up the special experiences that turn into memories for a college athlete.

Despite an abrupt end to the 2015 season, Hannah Womack, Annie Ward, Michelle Walker and Sarah Rebibo have had accomplished careers as Wildcats.

The departing seniors talked about some of their fondest moments while being a part of the Chico State women’s basketball team and what will come next when they graduate.

Annie Ward

Why did you chose the Chico State basketball program?

I’ve always liked Chico because my brother went here. When (Coach Fogel) called me to come up and to visit, I obviously wanted to come and check it out and see what the basketball side was about. I love Coach. We have a great relationship, and I knew this was a right fit for me.

What is your best memory on the court?

I have two. First one was winning the CCAA Championship down in Monterey. We were tied with San Diego in the last game of the season. We found out right after we won that San Diego lost, so we were the lone leaders of the league. That was really exciting.

Last year in Humboldt, it was a really close game. We ran the same play at the end like four times. (Jazmine Miller) shot it, and then Hannah (Womack) shot it a couple times, and they couldn’t hit. Then I finally made it to win the game. Then Hannah attacked me and made me cry because she bumped my head and my nose. Analise (Riezebos) made two free throws at the end of the game and sealed the deal.

What are your future plans?

I’m going to be done in May, completely graduated. Then I am going to move home and try to get a job. I’m going to try and go to grad school to get my special education credentials. I might to take a little time off to travel and spend some time with my family and stuff.

What is the biggest thing to take away from your time in Chico?

From Chico, especially with this last season being so hard, I learned more about myself. I got way closer with coach Brian (Fogel) this season and my teammates because we were going through a rough time. I feel like I learned more this season than any other season. But at the same time, I feel like the main thing that I am going to take away from it is just all the relationships I’ve built with coach, with my teammates, teammates in the past and our boosters.

Hannah Womack

What is the main reason you chose the Chico State basketball program?

I left from New Mexico and was looking for a place to continue to play. Chico was close to home and my dad was just like ‘Hey, let’s go check out this place before we check out any other places because it’s the closest.’ I said it was fine and didn’t think anything of it, but as soon as I met Brian (Fogel), I just got this feeling. I came to Chico without meeting any of my teammates and knowing anybody. It was just off meeting Brian. I just knew I wanted to play for him.

What is your best memory on the court?

I’m sure Annie (Ward) is going to tell you the same thing. One really memorable moment on the court was in her sophomore year when Chico State played at Cal State Monterey.

(Prior to the game, they were tied for first against UC San Diego. They won the game against the Otters and then later found out that same night that UC San Diego had lost, therefore the Wildcats stood alone at the top of the league.)

What are you future plans?

I’m not one of those girls that has everything planned out. I would love to continue to play basketball if I had the opportunity. Right now, I’m just focusing on finishing school.

What is the biggest thing to take away from your time in Chico?

I learned to trust people and push through adversities. Later on in life, if you want to be successful, then we got to give a 100 percent into everything. Never to give up.


Sarah Rebibo

What is the main reason you chose the Chico State basketball program?

Because of the community and all the people involved in the basketball program, like all the boosters and how everyone comes to our games and just how it is like a total college town.

What is your best memory on the court?

Probably beating Pomona and Dominguez (Hills) in 2014.

What are your future plans?

I plan to apply to nursing school once I graduate with my degree in exercise physiology.

What is the biggest thing to take away from your time in Chico?

The bonds that I’ve made with people and the impact that people have made on my life that are like boosters, my coach and my teammates.


Michelle Walker

What is the main reason you chose the Chico State basketball program?

I always wanted to come to Chico State. It’s been my dream school for quite a while. I like it because it is so close to home. It’s only two hours to home from here. I have family history in Chico, and I just love how beautiful it is. And I really like Brian too. Coach Brian was a huge reason why I came.

What is your best memory on the court?

Last year, we played Dominguez Hills at home and were tied or about to go into overtime or something. I just remember that I grabbed a huge rebound. I guess it was a huge rebound. I had no idea at the time. After hearing from the coaches and the players, apparently I got this ginormous rebound that if I wouldn’t have gotten it, it would have cost us the game.

What is your best memory off the court?

We always volunteer at the Boys and Girls Clubs at the beginning of every season. Some of our sponsors would have us over for dinner, and it was always really fun to go over there. We would go on hay rides and see horses.

What are your future plans?

I still have one more semester at Chico State, and then I will probably be working at Enloe (Medical Center). I really like Chico, so I don’t see myself leaving for awhile.

What is the biggest thing to take away from your time in Chico?

Live in the moment. My coach always said on and off the court, just live in the now because before you know it, it’s going to be gone.

Dylan Wakefield can be reached at [email protected] or @dylan_wakefield on Twitter.


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