Let me introduce you to a real champion: Julie McCarthy!

Gepubliceerd op 26 juni 2022 om 09:00

Julie McCarthy played basketball since she was 16 years old. She went to the United States to play in Tennessee and Florida, and she has rebounding skills you don’t see very often! Before she played basketball she was a handball player. Her effort and hustling is what makes Julie a real champion! Photo: Fiba Europe

Different people who inspiring Julie

Julie was a handball player. It could be that her skills as a handball player improved her style of playing basketball. “I am a real hustler, because I want every ball possession the team can get,” Julie explains. “That makes me a tight defender as well. I want to get every rebound, or to stop a fast break situation of our opponent. When I am open, I can shoot the ball as well, but I won’t describe myself as a shooter. My place in offense is around the post area.”

Julie is not the only basketball player within her family. Her brother Henry plays basketball as well. “My brother doesn’t like to play in the post. He is much more of a ballhandler who shots a lot of threepointers. That’s the style of playing he prefers the most, playing as a guard. He inspires me a lot, just like Émilie Gomis. She is a France basketball player who also played for Fenerbahçe SK and 194 games for the national team of France. She was our assistant coach in season 2020-2021. Her mentality and how she reads the game is very inspiring for me!”

From handball to basketball

Handball is a much more physical game. Many defensive stops are allowed. “I remember I used my hands and arms a lot in offense and defense, so when I switched to basketball I was often fouled out during the game,” Julie remembers. “I enjoyed handball a lot, but I like basketball much more. At first I played two years with the Ullern BB’ers in Oslo. The basketball community is pretty small, but everyone knows each other. My dad watched every game of me. After I played basketball in Oslo I went to Tennessee State University in 2013, playing for the Tigers. I love the program, and since I had great stats from our European Championship tournament it was a good moment to start. In the beginning it was a big transition. The tempo was much higher, and basketball is the number one sport in America of course! Later on I decided to make a transfer and that is why I went to Florida Tech Athletics. Though I was a bit broken down, I knew I could do better over there. My coach John Reynolds is one of the best coaches I ever had! He was tough, but also sympatric. He told me that I have to toughen up, and make more use of my physical skills. During season 2015-2016 I received more minutes and had a higher average of seven points and seven rebounds per game.”

Winning the championship

After playing in the United States for a while, Julie decided to play professional in Norway. She have had a great time at where she’s is still playing now: Baerum Basket. “At Baerum I had a coach I had before. We also had import players, so I also played with American players. The older I get, the more confidence I have in myself. I always believe in myself, and I developed more post moves and my rebound skills.”

I asked Julie if Baerum Basket is about to win the championship between now and three years. Her answer was very clear: yes! With yes she definitely meant this season, because during the championships Baerum beat the number one Ulriken with 63-59. Julie had 15 points and also had 15 rebound. So she can have much more confidence in herself if she can prove her talent and skills during a championship game. That makes her an important and inspirational player for every basketball team!

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