GRAND RAPIDS, Michigan – Four of West Michigan’s top female basketball players have all played travel basketball together since grade six.
Now their hard work is paying off ahead of their final high school season.
Theryn Hallock of Forest Hills Central, Abbey Kimball of West Catholic, Alli Carlson of East Grand Rapids and Alaina Diaz of Hudsonville all became extremely close while playing summer basketball with each other.
“It’s fun to see your friends succeed and cheer them on as you stand out,” smiled Kimball.
Kimball and Hallock have both pledged to play basketball at Michigan State while Carlson will play at Western Michigan and Diaz is not committed with five basketball offers, while also considering track and field.
“We’ve created a really big family that’s been around for many years,” said Diaz, “it will be sad at the end of the season because I will never play with these girls again.”
Hallock says it’s moving to see how much they’ve all improved over the many years of playing together.
“It’s heartwarming,” Hallock added, “we’ve all put in so much work, lifting, running, training, all of that.”
Their MBA 2022 basketball team has seen great success over the years, especially this summer.
The team are now part of the Under Armor circuit as they compete in the national tournament in Pennsylvania this weekend as one of the country’s 32 teams competing for the championship.
“There’s definitely pressure because we’re new to the tour,” admitted Carlson, “we’re just going to try to prove ourselves, but we played really well in the last tournament.”
Hallock says that as one of the few Michigan teams invited they will try to represent.
“We’re really excited, we’re going to represent Michigan and hopefully win a championship.”
The brotherhood within the team will not be easy for the players to forget.
“It was special,” Kimball said, “the families, the community, the friendships that we’ve built over the years are really crazy.”
The memories between the four, along with East Kentwood’s Jada Washington and Grand Haven players Zoe Spoelman and Molly Long will live on.
“To be with them for so long we’ve all become really close and it’s really nice to play with my best friends,” Carlson said.
With their last tournament together this weekend, the mad rush is already starting to kick in.
“I cried last month, it’s going to be a really tough and emotional week,” Hallock laughed.
“Yes, I’m sure there will be some tears,” Diaz added.
The team are seeded at Spooky Nook in Manheim, Pa. This weekend as they look to win a final championship.