Emotions run high at senior night

There may be no crying in baseball, but apparently there is crying in basketball for the GW women’s basketball team.

After the Colonials defeated Rhode Island in their last regular season home game, Noelia Gomez led the five GW seniors to center court where they sang a tearful rendition of the alma mater.

Gomez, Mandisa Turner, Khadija Deas, Vesna Perak and Mia Chiparus suited up for possibly their last game at the Smith Center. Depending on their postseason fate, the Colonial women could return home to host games in the NCAA Tournament or the Women’s National Invitational Tournament.

Gomez, the all-American forward who head coach Joe McKeown has called the greatest player in GW history, holds impressive credentials. She’s the all-time leader in scoring average (17.9 points per game) and despite playing only three seasons at GW, she ranks seventh and eighth on the all-time lists for scoring and rebounding.

“Not a whole lot hasn’t been said about Gomez,” McKeown said. “I’ll leave the talking to the WNBA.”

Turner, who made the all-time lists for rebounding (15th) and blocked shots (tied for eighth), said the end hasn’t hit her yet because the Colonial women have another month of basketball left.

“I’ve had some rough times but I’m leaving with good feelings,” Turner said. “I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything in the world.”

Deas – the team’s only center – also ranks eighth all time in blocks. When asked what it felt like to play for the first time since Jan. 10 because of a herniated disk in her neck, a stoic Deas said, “I got in.”

Perak showed flashes of excellence in her GW career but is mostly known for her great personality.

“I might go into coaching,” Perak said.

Chiparus received the “Unsung Hero Award” in 1997-’98. McKeown said she’s a victim of the NCAA for being denied an extra year of eligibility after she sat out her freshman year.

“I wish I could play more, but I’m happy,” Chiparus said.

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