Sports

Captain Kelly Fox ’08

Girls Basketball Captain Kelly Fox ’08 was not always the sharpshooter that she is today. Fox’s first memories of playing organized basketball were not of her draining three pointers or sinking foul shots. Instead, Fox recalls competing on her third grade elementary school team. “It was your typical idea of third grade basketball. Everyone was running around and smashing into each other. The usual scores of 4-3 clearly reflected the defensive battles taking place,” joked Fox. Fox started playing basketball because all of her friends were taking up the sport. However, Fox’s passion for the game soon propelled her to the national stage. For six straight years, Fox competed in a nationally organized foul shooting competition. The tournament was broken up into five levels: a local town qualification, the district finals, the state finals, the regional competition, and finally, nationals. After countless hours of practice from the charity stripe, Fox finally advanced to the national finals. With 3,000,000 other competitors already eliminated, Fox knocked down her final free throws, forever etching her name on a plaque at the Basketball Hall of Fame. Growing up as the star shooter on all of her teams, Fox had a difficult time at first adjusting to Andover’s team-oriented play. Fox commented, “The biggest change I’ve made over my years at Andover was learning how to trust my teammates. I’ve definitely developed from an individualistic player into a true point guard.” In fact, Fox describes her playing style as being similar to Dallas Mavericks All-Star point guard Jason Kidd. Kidd is known as an exceptionally unselfish player who always has a knack for finding an open teammate with his spectacular vision and poise. However, Fox’s favorite professional basketball player is Washington Wizards superstar Gilbert Arenas, nicknamed “Agent Zero,” himself known for sharpshooting and taking over the game in tight situations. Fox admires his ability to be loose and laid-back on and off the court — Arenas writes a humorous blog — while being one of the league’s top scores. For example, Fox’s favorite story of Arenas is a halftime rendezvous when instead of sitting next to his locker to hear the coach speak, Arenas casually walked out and took a shower before returning for the second half. Although Fox does not consider herself a very superstitious person, there is one meal she always has to have before a game. Fox stated, “I have to have my Cinnamon Toast Crunch. It’s the breakfast of champions.” If there is one game that Fox will remember ten years down the road, it would undoubtedly be her match-up against Northfield Mount Hermon her upper year. With just seconds remaining and her team down by one, Fox recalls the play. “Kara Hollis [’07] was inbounding the ball and we were trying to run the play that we drew up in the huddle. The play broke down and I cut to the block. Hollis passed me the ball and I threw up a hook shot as time expired. Somehow, the shot dropped and we came away with a one-point victory.” Even as a Captain, Fox is not the most vocal senior on the team. Her companionship with Hailee Minor ’08 has been especially invaluable. Minor, one of the more vocal members on the team, has taken the pressure off Fox, allowing her to simply perform and lead by example on and off the court. With Fox’s tenure as a basketball player at Andover having officially ended, she reflected on her proudest moment of her career with the program. Fox stated, “Beating Exeter in my last regular season game was the perfect ending for me.” Fox had five points and eight assists in the victory, clearly exemplifying her full transformation as an unselfish player. This balanced performance put an exclamation point on Fox’s spectacular season as Captain of the Girls Varsity Basketball team.