megan-gandrup

Clinton senior Megan Gandrup launches a three during a regular season home game this year at Yourd Gymnasium. Gandrup has became a premier scorer for the River Queens, averaging 15.5 points this season. 

It’s been a bit of a transition for Clinton senior Megan Gandrup this year, but her stats the last two games are showing that she’s finding her niche in the 2018 River Queen lineup.

The senior point guard has scored 20+ in three consecutive games. That’s quite a jump from her 9.2 points per game in the 2017-2018 campaign.

“It feels good because you put a whole bunch of work in during the summer, play during the summer and then to finally have a good game, it feels good,” Gandrup said about her hot streak. “It’s rewarding you for your hard work.”

Her high scoring games are a part of a new role she’s taken on this year. After playing varsity for four year, Gandrup finds herself as one of the main offensive threats for the River Queens.

It’s a role she hasn’t really felt before.

“I’m not necessarily pressured to score, but you know your team can count on you,” Gandrup said. “Sometimes you have to start scoring to get them to roll with you.”

She’s was averaging 14.1 points per game, that is before a 25 point performance Tuesday night. She’s shooting 38.1 percent from the field, 76 percent from the free throw line, and has drained a team high in three pointers.

“I wouldn’t say I’m more nervous, I just like to go out there and just play,” Gandrup said. “I know what I can do and what I am capable of.”

Her team is helping that, with seniors Macy Mulholland and Molly Chapman pitching in points and assists. Plus, new head coach Stacy Clark is helping to push Gandrup to her potential.

“They’re definitely supportive and they’re all confident in me” Gandrup said. “Coach won’t tell me to not shoot the ball, she’ll tell me to take my shot.”

That’s not to say Gandrup wasn’t a threat before this year. In fact, last year she set the school record for career assists. A school record. As a junior.

“I wasn’t paying attention to any of it,” Gandrup said about last year. “Then one day we were looking at it and we realized how close I was. I said I can do this this year and then keep adding to it.”

Assists are her specialty considering she’s unbelievably speedy and solid on ballhandling.

“I create shots for others,” Gandrup said. “An assist, getting an assists and a perfect pass, is almost just as a exciting as a big three. You know you did that and you’re setting your teammates up to succeed.”

So assists and high scoring, she does a little bit of everything. She’s definitely improved from junior to senior year, and it’s shown in the River Queens’ performances.

Her focus in the offseason? Speed.

“It’s definitely getting quicker, especially for defense,” Gandrup said.

Part of that is that good defense translates to offense. Part of that is that Gandrup knows she’s heading to the next level.

She’s planning on playing collegiate basketball, with it narrowed down to a couple of schools. That means one of her focuses, besides aiding her River Queens, is continuing to improve her own pace of play.

“I know the transition to college will be different, a lot faster and aggressive,” Gandrup said.

For now, her attention is on their season. With three solid outings in a row—two of them resulting in wins—she’s on her way to quite the senior season.

She may not be the loudest, but she definitely is an impactful leader. She knows when she needs to be vocal on the court and also leads by action.

“I think I just know what I have to do,” Gandrup said. “I call out the plays, it’s a lot different on the court.”

With the River Queens’ victory over Burlington on Tuesday night, they improve to 4-4 with a trip to Davenport Assumption slated for Friday.