Swift Current’s Mackenzie McIntyre will continue her basketball career next season with the MacEwan University Griffins in Edmonton.
“I always heard go the place that you feel the most wanted. That was definitely the case at MacEwan. Right off the first meeting I had with the coach I had a really great connection and I just felt really good when I went there and visited with the girls and the coach. Everything just felt perfect,” said McIntyre, who will study business.
McIntyre, 17, was announced along with Calgary guard Toki Tsuzuki and Edmonton forward Toni Gordon in the Griffins 2022-23 recruiting class.
“Obviously your first year you watch and learn and try and get better. There is a girl that when I’m in her first year she’s in her fifth year, so I am going to watch and mirror her and then hopefully take her minutes when I’m in my second year.”
McIntyre reached out to Griffins coach Katherine Adams despite missing her entire grade 11 season due to the pandemic.
“It was good because I had film from grade 10. Obviously it could have been trickier if I didn’t and it was tricky because I was injured at the start of the season because for lots of coaches grade 10 is a lot different than grade 12, so a lot of coaches want to see that. My grade 10 film I guess was good enough and that really helped.”
The six-foot McIntyre has been a guard for the Swift Current Comp. Ardens during her career and expects to play around the perimeter for the Griffins as well.
“That’s what they said I was. I feel like I’m kind of a utility player, I just kind of go everywhere. Wherever they want me I’ll play.”
McIntyre has also been a standout on the volleyball court and has spent time with Team Saskatchewan in that sport.
“I think my brain was always kind of basketball is my place, but I definitely have thought about volleyball because I had a couple more opportunities in volleyball with the provincial team than I did with basketball. I feel that basketball just comes easier to me and is just more what my body is for,” she explained.
Her basketball career has been disrupted by covid during her grade 10 and 11 seasons. She was also forced to miss the start of this basketball season due to nerve damage in her wrist after setting a serve in volleyball.
“The estimated recovery was two to three months and that was really tough to hear. But I’m back now so it feel good,” she explained.
McIntyre was finally able to get back on the court on Jan. 14 during a win over Weyburn when she led the team with 13 points.
“It felt really good to be back. I was just really excited and kind of nervous, but once I got playing it felt really good and I was excited to be out there,” she said after the game.
The Ardens were out to a 7-2 start to the season, winning their last six games at home.
“I’m really excited about the season. Obviously our main goal is going to Hoopla. This year we really want to try and be one of the top seeds at Hoopla and have a chance at a medal game.”
She credited Ardens head coach Andrew Herrick with helping her get to the U Sports level.
“I’d say my biggest help was Mr. Herrick. He’s done a lot with me, he’s coached me since grade seven. He definitely saw something in me and pushed me to work my best. He pushed me to come in and shoot in the morning and go to as many camps as I could in the summer. He’s really helped me get here.”