WATERTOWN – There are only so many things in life that are guaranteed. Watertown-Mayer’s Monika Czinano getting a double-double in a basketball game is close on that list.
The senior center and Iowa commit dominated all season, and thus is the Herald Journal Girls Basketball Player of the Year for the 2017-2018 season.
Czinano, who scored her 1,000th career point in the first game of the season, only got better as the season went on. She finished the year averaging a double-double with 23 points per game, and 14 rebounds per game.
Not only can Czinano score at will at times, she’s also improved dramatically as a passer. When Czinano gets doubled in the post, which is fairly often, she’s got the ability and wit to pass it out to her teammates for good looks. Czinano tallied 41 assists this season, while also being second on the team in steals with 44.
Czinano helped lead the Royals to back-to-back conference titles this season, was an All-State selection for Class AA, and a Miss Minnesota Basketball finalist. She’s also a three-time All-Conference selection, and finishes her career with 1,643 career points.
“Monika was truly a dominant player on the basketball court this year,” W-M coach John Rosholt said. “She faced a number of highly touted post players this season and Monika outplayed each and every one. The post position in girls basketball is a very physical position where talented players like Monika take a pounding each and every game. In addition to the physicality of the position, Monika played some mind-boggling minutes this season. She met these physical challenges with resolute determination which involved an awe-inspiring mental toughness on Monika’s part.
“Most importantly, Monika demonstrated great leadership this season both on and off the floor. She was a remarkable role model this season and an incredible positive influence on her teammates, fans and coaches. Her demeanor on the court was consistently positive and even-tempered. She gained a tremendous amount of respect from coaches, fans, and officials by the way she carried herself on the floor. Monika deserves the many post-season accolades, not so much for the stats and numbers that she put up this season, but by modeling how the game should be played.”