Enochs epitomizes team player on the hardwood
MARIETTA — Alexis Enochs still had her game-face on after scoring her 1,000th career point on Winter Weekend Saturday at Ban Johnson Arena.
There was no stoppage of play or celebrating, because the 6-foot-1 senior and her Marietta College teammates were focused on protecting the lead against an Ohio Northern University team that smoked them by 28 points (84-56) last month at the ONU Sports Center in Ada, Ohio.
Enochs’ milestone bucket at the 5:46 mark of the third quarter extended the MC advantage to 33-25. Those two points gave the former Fort Frye Cadet nine for the contest, and, as it turned out, she would only score one more at the charity stripe, also the very last point in the closing seconds of a 58-50 triumph over the Polar Bears.
Really, the team victory was all that mattered to the almost 22-year-old Enochs. (Enochs will be celebrating a birthday this Friday Valentine’s Day.)
“I’m excited (for the milestone), but I’m more excited for the win,” she said after being photographed with her mom Stacy Nichols and a sign reading “1,000 points.”
Enochs, an athletic training major and world traveler (Spain last June) became the 13th cager in MC women’s basketball program history to reach the 1,000 point milestone.
“Alex works really hard,” said fourth-year Marietta head coach Kole Vivian. “When Alex committed here, we knew that she was going to be pretty special. She’s been in the rotation since day one and has been one of best players for the last four years.”
Interestingly, Enochs was not a 1,000 point career scorer at Fort Frye.
“At Fort Frye, we always played defense really strong, and we had a lot of big players when I was there, like Deidra (Combs), Taylor (Buchanan), Morgan (Borich), Brooke (Borich), Megan (Liedtke), Makayla (Liedtke) and all of them,” recalled Enochs. “So, I was more defense.”
That’s not to say that Enochs didn’t shoot. She scored her share of points, just not 1,000. She was a solid defender, though, because that’s what was stressed, not only to her but to all of the Cadet players.
“The defense has got to be there,” said veteran Fort Frye boss Dan Liedtke. “We probably work more on defense than offense. I try to sell it to the girls so much about how important it is, and how you can take the other team’s momentum or offense away from them. Get the other team uncomfortable when they play, and while you’re doing that, they’re not going to be playing at their best. Anyone who’s played at Fort Frye knows that we take playing defense very seriously.”
At MC, Enochs made her first appearance on the All-Ohio Athletic Conference team. An honorable mention, she averaged 12.9 points per game and was second on the Pioneers in rebounding with 5.6 per game. She also finished her junior campaign third in the OAC in blocked shots with 1.5 per game.
Currently, Enochs leads Marietta with 13.6 ppg and 4.9 rpg. She scored a career-high 29 points in a Pioneer win against North Carolina Wesleyan four days after Christmas 2019.
“We look to her so much, and she has so much responsibility on this team,” said MC junior point Bailee Brooks. “I’m so proud of the way she handles herself.
“A lot of teams come in and they really focus on Alexis, and she handles it so well.”
“She gets in the gym and works her butt off,” Brooks continued.
Thing is, as far as milestones go, Enochs could add to her hoops resume, possibly as early as this week.
“Alex is also one win away from tying the school record for a player,” Vivian said.
If the MC women win at the University of Mount Union at 7 p.m. Wednesday night, Enochs will achieve that mark, and then if the Pioneers are victorious at Wilmington this Saturday, the day after her b-day, she’ll own it.
After the Quakers, the Pioneers have two remaining regular season home games on the schedule against Muskingum University and Heidelberg University.
Ron Johnston can be reached at email@example.com