MUNDELEIN — The Mundelein girls basketball team has had some tough times on the court over the past few weeks. Still, the Mustangs have been able to put things in perspective after completing a holiday service project in December.
Junior guard Maggie Mahar said the Mundelein girls built some relationships by working on a project to provide toys and clothes to needy children in the Chicago area. Girls from all levels of the program participated, providing the varsity players with an opportunity to work with the freshmen and junior varsity players.
Mahar said it was unique in the sense that the different levels rarely get the chance to spend time with one another outside of the gym.
“It was interesting because I was with people I didn’t really know before,” she said. “We support each other throughout the season, but we really don’t get an opportunity to get to know each other on a different level.”
The girls themselves put together the money needed to sponsor three families.
Sophomore forward Madison Davis led one of several groups. Her group was in charge of shopping for a 9-year-old boy. Davis said the girls picked out two outfits along with some toys.
“It was fun,” she said. “I didn’t know the two freshmen in my group, but we all bonded and learned things about each other. And of course, [the project] helps you understand the community outside the school. It felt really good to give back. It’s important to us since the community really supports us.”
Mundelein has been trying to bounce back after an ugly 79-49 loss to Stevenson Dec. 20. Mahar said her teammates recognize what‘s wrong, particularly on defense. She said that with time, the problems will correct themselves as the team learns to play better as a unit.
“A couple of the girls stepped up and talked,” she said of the mood in the locker room after the loss to Stevenson. “They said we need to step up and play together and stay together, especially in these types of situations. We need to build better relationships among the team, especially off the court. That will help us on the court.”