Connect with us

Basketball

SAN NICOLAS NAMED COLLEGIATE HOOPS MVP

Former Academy star leading the way for Geneva College

By Patrick Lujan

Former Academy Cougars basketball star Mia San Nicolas is not done adding to her collection of athletic accolades after winning her college team’s MVP award for Geneva College Women’s Basketball.

The 2019 graduate of Academy and two-time Guam high school MVP also made the 2nd Team All-PAC (Presidents’ Athletic Conference) team in her junior season at the Beaver Falls, Pa. school, leading her team in points, rebounding and blocked shots the last two seasons. This season she averaged 17.7 ppg and 7.7 rpg.

Mia San Nicolas is named women’s basketball MVP at Geneva College in her junior season (courtesy photo)

“I am blessed and humbled to win an individual MVP award, but I am also mindful that this award was not possible without the guidance of my coaches, past and present, and the support of my teammates, past and present, and my parents (John and Yvonne),” said San Nicolas, who just returned home for the summer. “My focus has always been team first, and although I enjoy winning the individual award, I play within the team mission and focus on the success of the team at all times.”

THE GRIND

San Nicolas was born into the sport as both parents excelled on the hard courts. Started playing at age 7, Mia had dreamed of playing college hoops since her middle school years.

“Pursuing my dream of playing college basketball has been rooted in me as a goal since I was very young,” San Nicolas said. “When I hit middle school, I knew that I wanted to play in college. I was blessed during middle school and high school to have coaches that helped me improve my skills and mindset to play a very competitive level.”

After starring in basketball and soccer at Academy, San Nicolas’ first collegiate stop was with Wenatchee Valley College.

“The NWAC was a very competitive conference, and the Knights were the defending champions. Right away, I noticed significant similarities and differences between my experiences on Guam and at WVC. The similarities were all the basic fundamentals that I learned on Guam that also helped me in my transition to college ball.”

The differences, though, were eye-opening for Mia.

DIFFERENCES IN COLLEGE HOOPS

  • Players are taller and more imposing physically (Mia is 6’0″);
  • Coaching staff comprised of former college players;
  • Trainer/physio available, when needed;
  • The focus and education on recovery, rehabilitation, and nutrition;
  • Availability of the gym and weight room;
  • Amount of games during the season outnumbered Guam by double;
  • Two-a-day practices;
  • Significant travel by bus to away games (sometimes hours away);
  • Adjustment to a different role, that of a contributing role player.
Usually the tallest player on Guam, San Nicolas has faced stiff competition against players taller and bigger. (courtesy photo)

“This challenged me mentally and physically
and I am so blessed that my parents helped me embrace that role and I continued
to work hard.”

San Nicolas transitioned to Geneva College in 2021 to play for coach Michael Grinder. She earned a starting spot early in the season and has remained there since.

Heading into her senior season, Coach Grinder has already named her the team captain for next season.

“I know he has a lot of expectations and I hope I can deliver.”

HOME FOR THE SUMMER

Mia is home for the summer where she will take in the much-needed island life, even possibly playing for Team Guam in a Saipan tournament.

She has one year left in school and plans to continue playing at Geneva College, using her fifth year of eligibility while pursuing her end goal of becoming a Doctor of Physical Therapy.

Ad

GPS Sports Calendar

January

February 2024

March
SU
MO
TU
WE
TH
FR
SA
28
29
30
31
1
2
3
Events for January

1st

Events for February

2nd

Events for February

3rd

4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Events for February

3rd

No Events
Events for February

5th

Events for February

6th

Events for February

7th

Events for February

8th

Events for February

9th

Events for February

10th

11
12
13
14
15
16
17
Events for February

10th

No Events
Events for February

12th

Events for February

13th

Events for February

14th

Events for February

15th

Events for February

16th

Events for February

17th

18
19
20
21
22
23
24
Events for February

18th

Events for February

19th

Events for February

20th

Events for February

21st

Events for February

22nd

Events for February

23rd

Events for February

24th

25
26
27
28
29
1
2
Events for February

25th

Events for February

26th

Events for February

27th

Events for February

28th

Events for February

29th

COMING SOON …

  • 3rd Quarter Sports: Rugby, Boys Basketball, Softball, Tennis in full swing!

 

 

QUICK HITS

Shawn Bamba won the Arizona state wrestling championship while siblings Jussiah and Justyn took third place in their divisions at state.
Shawn (12th) won the 150-lb division while Jussiah (11th) took bronze in the 120-lb class and Justyn (9th) took bronze in the 106-lb category.
All three were born on Guam before moving to Surprise, Arizona in 2014, where they all picked up wrestling in 2016.
Their parents are Justin and Shannon Bamba from Pago Bay.
—————————————————
Christian Delos Santos, son of Richard Delos Santos (Barrigada) and Norma Larimer Delos Santos (Dededo), won the Kentucky High School Athletic Association wrestling state championship in the 113-lb weight class.
His sister Naiya took 3rd place in the 100-lb girls division.

More in Basketball