Lady Rams seniors reflect as final season winds down


Brandyn Wilcoxen , Sports Editor

In 2016, the yet unnamed Stanley A. Changnon Gymnasium 2.0 opened its doors for the first time. Four years later, it sees two Freshmen from that first season walk off the court for the final time as Mt. Vernon Lady Rams.

Annie Harrison, ‘20 and Libby Schmidt, ‘20 led their Lady Rams to a 70-39 victory over Taylorville last Saturday, marking the final home game in their careers. As their Senior season winds down, Harrison and Schmidt reflect on their swan songs.

“It was very emotional walking off the court one last time,” Schmidt recalls. “I’m going to miss everyone on the team. We are all very close and we get along like family.”

The family aspect surrounding the 2019-20 Lady Rams has been echoed by players and coaches all year, and could be seen as early as Thanksgiving.

“My favorite moment was getting 3rd in the Nashville Tournament this year,” declares Harrison, who was named to the 2019 Nashville Thanksgiving Tournament’s All-Tournament team. “This was when I saw our team really start to work together!”

“My favorite moments are getting hyped in the locker room before the varsity games,” says Schmidt.

The Lady Rams look to maintain their success into the postseason as they carry a 17-14 record into Richland County for the IHSA 3A Regional Championship game against the top-ranked hosts on Thursday, February 20.

“My goals for this team are to make a big impact in our regional for sure,” says Harrison. “I think that we should strive to get to the championship then do our best to get that regional title.”

Harrison’s final night at Changnon Gymnasium was especially emotional, being a second-generation Ram after her father played for Mt. Vernon at the original Changnon Gymnasium.

“It was definitely emotional for me. I’ve spent so many hours in that gym and have been in there pretty much everyday of my last four years so when it sunk in that it was my last time playing in Changnon, it was really sad for me.”

However, for Harrison, this is not her last time playing basketball, as she has her sights set on college.

“I have committed to play at Rend Lake and am very excited about this next chapter in my basketball career!” future Lady Warrior Harrison says.

As they are set to leave MV behind, the seniors leave some final thoughts for the remaining Lady Rams to take into a new season.

“Always be the hardest worker in the room and be willing to put in all the extra work,” says Annie Harrison. “Great players don’t have an off season!”

“I’m going to miss this team a lot,” says Libby Schmidt. “Good luck next year and beat Centralia!”