Lady Dragons guard drumming up college interest

Posted Monday, Jul. 01, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Gretchen Morrison went out this summer looking to compete against the best. Well, it looks like she definitely attained her goal.

The Carroll senior-to-be shooting guard has been busy with basketball in two areas. First, she’s playing this summer for the Elevation Elite 2014 squad and will be traveling to tournaments in New Orleans, Murfreesboro, Tenn., Waco and Frisco this month.

Throughout June, she took unofficial visits to such Division I suitors as Bucknell in Pennsylvania, the University of North Dakota and was expected to travel to the University of Idaho and Washington State. Although there hasn’t been an offer extended, those schools have expressed interest. Morrison stayed on campus and played against some of the players on the current roster.

“It was a real eye opener,” she said. “You get to play in drills and live in the dorms. I knew it was going to be a higher level, and I went in there pretty confident that I could play against them. I made mistakes, but I felt pretty good about the way it went.”

Of course, girls high school basketball fans will recognize Morrison most often when she’s standing behind the three-point line. She converted 48 percent of her attempts (86-178) and averaged 12.1 points per game in 2012-2013 as Carroll went to the Class 5A Region I quarterfinals. Of course, this program has been frustrated, because it’s been denied trips to the regional tournament in the previous two seasons. That’s something that Morrison and point guard Kennedy Leonard want to change.

But Morrison doesn’t want to be known for being a specialist. While that’s appreciated, she’s trying to keep defenders honest with her dribble-drive game. If she can leave a defender with a pump fake, she can get a quick deuce. That’s what Carroll coach Teri Morrison wants.

“Gretchen’s going to bring experience and leadership and a fierce shooter’s mentality for us next season,” Morrison the coach said. “She has proven herself as one of the top scorers in the Metroplex beyond the arc.”

The Elevation Elite spent most of June conducting practice in two segments. One segment is held for scrimmaging. The second is for players to work on their individual fundamentals.

“I’ve been working a lot harder on my drive to the basket and make plays with the dribble,” Morrison said. “I think I’ve come a long way. I’m more proficient, but I have to keep working on finishing around the basket more.”

Basketball runs in the Morrison family. Gretchen’s older sister Mary Louise will be a senior at the United States Naval Academy in 2013-2014.

The dream match-up just missed becoming a reality. Navy and Bucknell are both in the Patriot League. If things were to work out for Gretchen, she would be facing Navy, but she would miss facing her sister by a season.

“It’s been a dream of mine to play in college since I started playing competitively in fifth grade,” Gretchen said. “I’ve seen Mary Louise play, and it would have been kind of cool. But I’m pulling for her, and I know she’s pulling for me.”

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