After being part of the Heat family for the past year Sarah Allison looks forward to finally being able to don a Heat uniform this fall as she adds another dimension to Heather Semeniuk’s women’s basketball team.
Sarah comes to the Heat with a scrapbook full of basketball success, and a history of being a winner. Her high school team the Elgin Park Orcas took home the Provincial Championship in her grade 10 year with only seven players on the squad, the following year the Orcas medalled again, finishing third in the province. In her grade twelve year Sarah was the Fraser Valley championship MVP.
As a member of the BC team for three straight years, culminating with a national silver medal at the Canada Games in PEI (2009) had Sarah courted by schools all over the country; she settled on the University of Calgary joining the Dinos following her senior year in high school. The Alberta school landed Allison because she liked the Dinos uptempo style of play, Sarah averaged 12 minutes a game in her first year on the veteran squad.
“I’ve always played a fast paced game – I love to press, I love to run the floor.”
This uptempo style will be something the Heat will look to do this year as coach Semeniuk looks to rotate a strong group of guards with veteran posts Roz Huber (5th year, Kelowna, BC) and Krystal Schouten (3rd year, Winnipeg, MB).
“I find that because we are an undersized team, especially in the CIS, that is going to have to be a big stress this year, we are going to have to make up for size in other ways. I’m excited to do that and be a part of that,” confesses Sarah, who at five foot ten and playing the guard spot she is actually big for her position. “That is a big part of my game – I love playing fast.”
“We are going to have to see how things play out at the beginning of next year,” adds Semeniuk discussing the makeup of her team.
“When all of the pieces are in place in September I’ll look at what I’ve got and structure the team accordingly. One thing I will say is Sarah will be a dangerous player for us in an uptempo game; she can really shoot the ball and also score in transition.”
“One of my roles this year will be a shooter,” confirms Allison, but she also plans to bring a large set of intangibles specifically “my competitive drive, that is something I pride myself on. I want to also bring some sort of leadership role as I pride myself on being a great teammate and a hard worker.”
Heather has already seen Sarah’s intangibles displayed every day in practice this past season and looks forward to having the sharpshooter around as part of the team this fall:
“She will bring such an element of competition to our team,” explains Semeniuk. She has the drive and she understands what it takes to win, when you come from a winning program – you know it and you do it.”
Other than passing through, Sarah’s first time in Kelowna was when she showed up in September to start her Human Kinetics program, this straight A student had never met her teammates nor her coach in anything more than a phone call and found that she fit right in.
“Since coming to UBC Okanagan I have felt not only welcomed by Coach Sem, my teammates and the athletic program, but also as if I am valued. The Heat encourage player development and foster close and professional bonds between your teammates and your coaches,” adds Allison on her red shirt year on campus. “It was just so positive, and the atmosphere just kind of rekindled my desire to play again –by Christmas I was antsy on the bench already to get into a uniform.”
“It didn’t take very long for me to realize how much fun I had playing basketball again,” adds the future Heat guard, “I cannot wait to don the blue and gold this upcoming fall.”