UP’s women’s basketball captain, Inga Hendrick, recently led her team to victory in the 2021 Rising Sun Women’s Basketball Tournament. Hendrick spoke to PDBY about her passion for basketball and her career so far.
How would you describe Inga Hendrick to someone hearing about you for the first time?
I would describe myself as [an] introvert that enjoys playing basketball.
How did you get into basketball?
I first got into basketball when I was 14 years old as an extra mural. I remember a few of my friends suggested we should go try it out and we discovered how fast-paced and exciting it was so we decided to keep on playing.
What is your favourite thing about basketball?
My favourite thing about basketball is that it is challenging. Basketball not only requires you to be physically fit but it also requires you to be mentally focused throughout the game, if you lose focus for just one possession you can lose the game. It is such a fast paced game that it requires you to be locked in the entire time.
What are some highlights of your basketball career so far?
I think being able to travel to different provinces and meeting people who are just as passionate about basketball is always exciting.
You and your team recently won the 2021 Rising Sun Women’s Basketball Tournament, how did that feel?
It was an amazing feeling but I think what made it even more exciting is the excitement on my teammates’ faces and how proud our coach was that we were able to pull it off. I was so proud of my team because we pushed ourselves the entire weekend.
Can you walk us through the process of preparing and competing for the tournament?
Our coach during practice told us that our pre-season was over and that it was time for us to start thinking like champions and going to every tournament we participate in with the mind-set to win. I believe that he planted a small seed in each of us that we could win and by the time the tournament came we all started to believe in ourselves.
How has your team’s training been affected during the pandemic?
Other than starting our pre-season training later than usual, the pandemic hasn’t really affected our training sessions.
What are your goals for the future in basketball?
This is not really a personal goal, but my team’s goal for the future is to come back with a medal at the USSA championships this year.
Who has most influenced you in your basketball career?
I would say the coaches I’ve had along my basketball journey have influenced me the most. In my basketball journey I’ve always been blessed with coaches that are dedicated to not only my development as a player but also as an individual. But my high school coach, Letha Zulu, is the one that made me fall in love with the sport and encouraged me to keep playing basketball in university.
What advice would you give aspiring athletes of the sport?
1. Hard work pays off, the time you spend perfecting your layups, your handles and shots eventually shows in the game.
2. Believe in yourself and believe in your TEAM mates.
Kayla is the Editor of PDBY for 2020 and 2021. She joined the copy team in 2017, and became head layout editor in 2018 before starting her term as Editor. Kayla is obsessed with PDBY and is considering moving into the office to live with Pssst… forever. You can reach her by email.