With a flick of her wrist about 21 feet from the basket, junior guard Alyssa Pechin let fly a shot that placed her in The College of New Rochelle basketball record book. As the ball passed through the hoop, it not only put the Blue Angels ahead in a game that ended a long losing streak to a conference rival, but enshrined Pechin into the exclusive 1,000 career points club.
"When the shot went in, I honestly smiled in relief that it was over," commented Pechin. "This accomplishment has been in my dreams the last week and I have been extremely nervous for the time to come. The noise that came from the crowd in that moment was unreal and my heart felt like it was going to come out of my chest."
Pechin joins Blue Angel greats Lois Salto, Ann Fitzpatrick and Laura Mitchell as the only CNR players to reach this milestone. Mitchell was the last player to accomplish this, reaching the millennial mark in 1986.
Pechin's AAU coach from the Lady Knicks, Ryan Fisher was in attendance, as was Mike Kiers, her coach at Our Lady of Victory Academy. Also at the game was Lou Kern, the coach who led the three previous 1,000 point scorers to national recognition.
"It was really important for me to see (Coach Fisher). He started me off and taught me many of the things I know today," noted Pechin.
Also in attendance, as always, was Pechin's family, as was a large and raucous student section. "I love the loud gyms; the screaming, the clapping, the stomping, all of it," Pechin commented. "(The student body) is always so excited to come out and watch us play."
As excited as Pechin was to eclipse the 1,000 point mark, her teammates were just as excited. "My teammates have been asking me for weeks when it was going to happen and some of them even told me before the game that they were more excited than I was! It felt good during the middle of the next play after my shot that (my teammates) on the floor stopped to give me high fives."
Following the milestone basket, Pechin hit another three as the first half buzzer sounded to put an exclamation point on the moment. Before heading into the locker room Pechin posed for a photo with head coach Kashif Hameed, Vice President for Student Services Dr. Colette Geary, and Director of Athletics Harold Crocker, commemorating the accomplishment.
When asked if she had thoughts of reaching this achievement when she joined the Blue Angels, Pechin stated, "I honestly didn't think about any goal at The College of New Rochelle except to help make the athletic department better. But after scoring almost 500 points as a freshman, I quickly realized how far I could take my skills, collectively and individually."
Only a junior, exactly how far Pechin can take her skills is a story still to be written, but for now, she can finally relax, knowing that her name has forever been etched in the Blue Angel basketball record book.
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