Player reaches a scoring milestone


Mary-Lynn Retassie

Gabbie Smith (center) scored 19 points, against Mercyhurst University Feb. 27 at the Sports Center.

Yang Chen, Sports Editor

Junior Gabbie Smith became the 38th 1,000-point scorer in Pitt-Johnstown history in a Feb.16  game against with California (Pa.) University.  In Smith’s 2019 season, she got 541 points, placing her at fourth in the conference, averaged 19.3 points per game, placing her fifth in the conference, and 220 free throw points, good second position in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference. 

Women’s head basketball coach Michael Drahos said, that Smith is a talented basketball player, and that she is growing with her skills.

“Her (Smith’s) performance makes the team trust her, and she also helps the team to set up.

“Her teammates will pass the ball to her, and try to assist her to score more.

“Alli McGrath is a good player, and stretches the floor for Smith to score.

“Smith is very good at four feet around the basket, and no one can stop her one to one. Her teammates will find her more and she is trying to score.

“In her freshman year, she got injured and missed a lot of games.

“Smith improved from an average of five points (per game) in her freshman year to 14.5 points in her sophomore year, and (scoring) 19.3 points in her junior year.

“Opposing teams send two players to stop her from scoring, but I can see that she is going to get more in her senior year,” Drahos said.

Smith said she employs adjustments to score.

“I just find a different way to score during the game, and my teammates and coaches are giving me more chances to score,” Smith said.

“I started to score on the right side and use my left hand to score during the game, and it gives me more chances to score.

“My team gives me the ball, opens the game for me, and pushes me to work harder.

“We are playing harder, and I’m trying to score. I’ll never stop scoring.

“I will get at least 20 free throws as individual training in preseason and offseason, and I have spent a lot of time to practice it (free throws).

“It’s the priority for me to score and my team on the way to the conference championship.

“None of the girls on our team are willing to lose and we will practice harder for our new start,” Smith said.

Senior Tori Moreland, captain of the Pitt-Johnstown women’s basketball team, said that Smith is a great player. 

“She does her work early and is crafty around the basket. I’m so glad she’s on the team,” Moreland said.

Women’s basketball assistant coach Renee Brown said that free throws are Smith’s new way to score. 

“It’s very exciting for her to become a 1,000-pointer in her junior year,” Brown said.