KINGMAN – Kim Carroll’s journey didn’t take the usual route, but the Kingman High School graduate isn’t letting that stop her from playing basketball at the next level.
Carroll took the first step in pursuing her dreams Friday as she signed her letter of intent to play at Scottsdale Community College.
“I would not drop this opportunity for anything,” Carroll said. “After the year off, getting back on the court and getting back with a team means everything to me.”
The same sentiment is shared by former Kingman High School girls basketball coach Danny Gonzalez. Both he and his wife Melissa Gonzalez helped Carroll develop into the player she is today and couldn’t be happier for her.
“I think it’s important, especially after one year out of high school, that she realizes what she has missed,” Gonzalez said. “Part of that is what we have taught them all the way through high school – We’re family. We’re going to do something together. It may end right now as a senior or it may carry you down the road into collegiate play. I believe that’s what Kimmy wants and I’m very proud of her.”
The bond built between Carroll and Danny Gonzalez was obviously present on the court, but it extended off the court as well.
(Coach Gonzalez) was more than just a coach,” Carroll said. “He was there if I needed something personal or anything. He was a huge influence in my whole high school career. Even middle school. For years, he’s been there for everything.”
Carroll has yet to build that kind of relationship with her new coach at Scottsdale Community College, but she did mention that coach Bike Medder and her ‘clicked’ right away.
That doesn’t mean it won’t take some time for her to adjust to the tougher competition, especially after Carroll took a year off following her senior year at Kingman. The former Lady Bulldog did have a successful end to her high school career though, as she ranked third on the team with an average of 7.6 points per game as Kingman advanced to the second round of the AIA Division III State Tournament.
“It’s a bigger challenge, for sure,” Carroll said of the next level. “Even though I took a year off, I’m ready. I’m ready to get back on the court.”