There has been talk for weeks about the way Marco Island Academy’s Megan Sweeney has been grabbing rebounds at a dizzying pace. An email from MaxPreps, the national high school sports authority, confirmed what Rays head coach Travis Barry suspected all along about his star rebounder.
The email informed Barry that Sweeney’s 19.3 rebounds a game average is tops in the state of Florida, ahead of Ransom Everglades’ Kathryn Serra (17.6). Nationally only DaiJa Turner of Village Christian Academy in Fayetteville, North Carolina (21.7) is ahead of Sweeney’s torrid rebounding pace.
On Saturday, Sweeney was pitted against a strong opponent in Seacrest’s Lillian Bonello during the Rays’ 47-33 win.
“She had 20 rebounds today,” Travis Barry said proudly. “She went up against one of the better post players in Naples today and shut her down.”
Bonnello, who averages 15.5 points a game, was held to five points against Sweeney and her MIA teammates.
So what makes this girl with a sinewy 5’10” frame such an effective rebounder?
“I think she’s tougher than everybody else,” Barry reasons. ”I play against her all the time and I come out bruised. Not only that, a lot of girls, they work for position. Megan gets position and she jumps. Most girls don’t do both. Megan will get position then will jump after she has the position. Most girls are position players and let the ball fall in their hands. But Megan will jump for the ball. That’s a key asset.”
“In practice we do a lot of things based on, you either complete this in a given amount of time or we do 10 pushups. Megan will knock out military pushups. She wasn’t this good at rebounding last year. It was developed over the season. She’s really become a good rebounder—and post player.”
So is Barry’s rebounding prodigy excited over her success?
“Very much,” Barry said with a smile.