Official Twitter of Chicago (Marist) Athletics Update

Event Details

  • March 13th, 2021

  • 2:00 PM

  • BASKETBALL

  • Varsity

  • Girl

  • Game

  • Home

  • ESCC Tournament

  • Main Gymnasium

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Game Summary

OFFICIAL TWITTER OF CHICAGO (MARIST) ATHLETICS

W

Vs.

ESCC TOURNAMENT

Marist’s Sydney Affolter is the 2020-21 Daily Southtown Girls Basketball Player of the Year

 

Marist’s Sydney Affolter is the 2020-21 Daily Southtown Girls Basketball Player of the Year: ‘A player like her comes along once or twice in a lifetime’

DAILY SOUTHTOWN 
MAR 18, 2021  10:38 AM
 
Marists Sydney Affolter, the 2020-21 Daily Southtown Girls Basketball Player of the Year, talked about her stellar career at Marist on Thursday, March 11, 2021.
Marists Sydney Affolter, the 2020-21 Daily Southtown Girls Basketball Player of the Year, talked about her stellar career at Marist on Thursday, March 11, 2021. (Tony Baranek / Daily Southtown)
 

She can’t deny it.

Marist senior Sydney Affolter gets a kick out of it when she outlifts some of the guys at the local health club.

“I would go with my dad and my brother,” Affolter said. “I’d be lifting, just a little bit less than my brother, but more than a lot of the guys in the gym. I’d always get looks and they’d say stuff to my dad — which I thought was funny.

“I’ll go lift now by myself, because my dad taught me so much, I know what’s routine for me. And a lot of the bigger guys in the gym definitely notice and say something to me.”

Affolter did a lot of heavy lifting in leading Marist (15-1) to an East Suburban Catholic Conference Tournament title.

The 2020-21 Girls Basketball Player of the Year averaged 22.7 points and 11.3 rebounds. She also was East Suburban Catholic Conference Player of the Year.

Affolter, an Iowa commit, didn’t let the lack of a state tournament due to COVID-19 concerns slow her down. She made the most of the shortened season.

“Obviously, it’s not the closure I wanted,” Affolter said. “I’ve always wanted to make it downstate. And it’s hard because I think this was a special team that could have done it this year.

“But I’m happy knowing that I made a big impact on Marist’s girls basketball program. And my teammates looking up to me, that’s enough closure for me.”

Affolter, a 5-foot-11 multipositional player, has been a starter for the RedHawks since her freshman season. She came to Marist off a grammar school career at St. Christina, where in five seasons her teams never lost a game.

In her high school debut, Affolter scored Marist’s first four points and finished with 12 in a 58-33 victory over Crete-Monee.

Marist's Sydney Affolter looks to make a play against Mother McAuley during a game on Monday, Feb. 22, 2021.
Marist's Sydney Affolter looks to make a play against Mother McAuley during a game on Monday, Feb. 22, 2021. (Gary Middendorf / Daily Southtown)

In her final varsity game, she scored 16 points, had 12 rebounds and made four assists as Marist beat Marian Catholic 53-44 for the ESCC Tournament title.

In between, Affolter earned a reputation as a player who did what needed to be done, even if it wasn’t in her comfort zone. Eventually, she made all facets of the game her comfort zone.

It gave RedHawks coach Mary Pat Connolly myriad options.

“A player like her comes along once or twice in a lifetime,” Connolly said. “I’m glad she chose to come to Marist. She has been our go-to player for the last four years, but she has been a team player as well.

“‘Syd’ really sacrificed for our team over the years. She could have been a prolific 3-point shooter. But as teams go, you put her where you need her. So she played a lot inside, sacrificing for the sake of our program winning.”

Affolter can score from anywhere. But she is equally proficient at grabbing a defensive rebound and firing an outlet pass to a teammate downcourt for an easy layup. She can also pass on the run — and often does.

It all seems quite natural.

“I think it is natural,” Affolter said. “Really, my dad has focused a lot on rebounding for me. Some people don’t take that as important, but I do.

“I mean, if you get an offensive rebound, you put it right back up and get two points. But I think my teammates learned that I’m going in for every rebound. And a lot of the time they are expecting me to get it, so they’re already down the floor.

“So, yes, I think it is instinct. I know where my teammates are.”

Together, they made Marist magic.