Shooting for new goals

May 30, 2002, vol. 24, no. 3
By Marianne Meadahl

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They made basketball history at SFU. Now four women's basketball teammates are heading off the court — all in different directions.

For each, it's time for a new game plan, and collectively, it's the final chapter in the story of the team's most amazing season. Clan hoop stars Teresa Kleindienst, Kirsten Wood, Gaby Salazar and Jennifer Van de Walle have completed their degrees at SFU and are shooting for new goals.

They leave with the satisfaction of earning SFU's first women's basketball championship trophy and chalking up a perfect season. But they're also saying goodbye to teammates who were at times like soul mates.

As close as the game drew them together, their future pursuits in the sport and outside of it will spread them farther apart than they might ever have imagined.

The next move for point guard Kleindienst, Basketball B.C. and SFU's female athlete of the year, is to join a club team in Spain, where former SFU hoop star Michelle Hendry plays. “I'm definitely going to keep playing, but it's not something I will be doing forever,” says Kleindienst. She'll remain on the Canadian national team and is shooting for the next Olympics.

The geography major, who is finished her studies but will convocate in October, is also considering SFU's professional development program.

Teammate Wood has already been accepted into the program. Before hitting the books in September, Wood, an English major, will spend the summer coaching basketball camps and the under-17 provincial team. Her playing days are essentially over. “We all expected the day would come when we'd go our separate ways. It's time to move on,” says Wood, now engaged and house-hunting. “The trophy was a good boost for us. But I'm ready for what comes next.”

After earning a degree in anthropology and archaeology, Salazar wants to teach English in Korea. She too has reached the end of her playing career and will continue her studies when she returns. Van de Walle is already travelling in Europe, following her boyfriend as he plays professional football in Norway.

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