Last Wednesday night, junior women’s basketball player Hillary Klimowicz passed the 900-point career mark.
This season, Klimowicz has been lighting up the scoreboard for the Lions as their 6-foot-3 center. While Klimowicz is undoubtedly an individual force to be reckoned with, she said she just loves to be part of a team.
“I’ve been in a few different groups and clubs throughout my life and nothing compares to having teammates that you know you can rely on and who will be there for you,” Klimowicz said.
Klimowicz came to the College her sophomore year after first attending St. Joseph’s University as a freshman. While there, she scored 275 points and earned the Atlantic-10 Rookie of the Year award. Looking to transfer out of St. Joseph’s, Klimowicz found the College to be the best in-state option for both academics and athletics.
This season alone, Klimowicz has captured the New Jersey Athletic Conference’s (NJAC) Player of the Week title four separate times.
Klimowicz did not immediately intend to play basketball at a high level. She began playing the sport in order to spend time with a close friend.
“It was more of a social thing for me,” she said. “But after a few years, something sparked in me that made me very competitive.”
That competitiveness goes hand-in-hand with the dedication she shows in playing for the College. According to Klimowicz, the team practices six days a week for two hours at a time in addition to weightlifting twice a week.
“We had three 6 a.m. practices a week last semester but have only one 6 a.m. this semester,” she said. “That’s a relief since I’m not really a morning person.”
Although she is constantly balancing a hectic schedule, Klimowicz does try to find opportunities to spend time with friends and practice the piano. She is also involved with Alpha Phi Omega, a co-ed community service fraternity on campus.
While Klimowicz continues to dominate for the College, she doesn’t see herself playing basketball as a career.
“I could see myself possibly playing overseas, but I think coaching is more definite for my future,” she said. “I coach little kids in the summer and love doing that.”
After finishing 13-14 last season, the Lions now hold a 15-5 record and are ranked No. 2 in the NJAC’s South Division.
“Turning last year’s losing season around has been a challenge,” Klimowicz said. “But it has allowed us to bond as a team and really learn what being an athlete, and more importantly a teammate, is all about.”