Democrat Photo by Ted Waddell
MILESTONE: Jeff-Youngsville coach Ron Bernhardt and Lady Trojan scoring ace Beth Fanning celebrate after she scored her 1,000th career point on Saturday.
Beth Fanning Nets 1,000th Point
By Ted Waddell
JEFFERSONVILLE February 29, 2000 -- In Saturday afternoons girls varsity basketball game against the Lady Indians of Liberty, Jeff-Youngsvilles Beth Fanning reached a scoring milestone.
With 5:46 remaining in the final frame, the 17-year old senior eluded her defensive opposition and two more rapidly closing players who were determined to cut off her drive to the basket and banked the basketball through the rim to score her 1,000th career point.
Fanning racked up 13 points in the first half and 14 in the third frame. As her total reached 27, Fannings teammates started a quiet countdown on the bench: 29, 31 and then as if by magic, 33 equaled 1,000 as Fanning, whos jersey number is 33, scored her milestone point.
According to Ron Bernhardt, coach of the Lady Trojans, Fanning got the 1000-point ball on the left side of the foul line and drove down the lane on a runner to score. Points #995, 996 and 997, 998 were jumpers from the left wing.
Fannings 1000th-point capped a four-year career at J-Y. (However, Fanning and her Lady Trojan teammates have at least one more game together, as the squad begins sectional play this evening. The Lady Trojans, seeded fourth in the Section IXClass D Tournament, are scheduled to host fifth-seeded S.S. Seward.)
As a freshman, she racked up 152 points. In her sophomore season, Fanning picked up 223. She added 298 more as a junior. And on Saturday, Fanning reached 327 points for the 1999-2000 season.
The game was scheduled at the last minute. While Fannings drive to the 1000-point barrier was common knowledge, when it actually happened, a lot of folks were caught by surprise. Her parents Phil and Rose Fanning, along with her grandmother Regina Bernhardt, watched from the stands as the points started racking up. But nobody had a camera. No 1000-point ball signed by her coach and teammates. No flowers. But a great surprise!
It took us all by surprise, Bernhardt said of Fannings achievement. It was our wildest dream come true. She was on fire today, she was sizzling.
I thought she might get twenty, but I had no idea shed score thirty-three today, said Phil Fanning. Shes worked hard for it.
According to Beths father, Liberty coach Ted Crowley deserves as much credit as anybody in helping to set up the game.
Our family really appreciates that spirit of sportsmanship, Phil Fanning said.
Im just thrilled for her, because she has a good work ethic and really deserves it, added Rose Fanning. Im very proud of her.
Lest anyone get the idea that the Lady Indians helmsman was going to cut Fanning any slack in her efforts to clear the 1,000-point hurdle, he didnt. Not by a long shot.
As Fanning started to demolish his defense, Crowley set up a triangle-and-two defensive set in an attempt to stem the tide. But the Jeff-Youngsville forward was not to be denied.
They were all over her, said Bernhardt of his first 1,000-point player. She made some incredible shots.
Even Beth Fanning was caught off guard.
I didnt think I was going to score thirty-three points today, she said. My teammates were keeping track, but I didnt know until everyone started jumping on me.
Weve had some real great winning teams over the years, she added. We play team ball, not individual ball. I have great teammates and a great coach. Thats how we got here today.
Fanning started her basketball career as a third and fourth grader while attending Liberty Parks & Rec basketball summercamps run by Crowley and Bernhardt, who is her uncle. In high school, Fanning spent part of her summer vacations sharpening up her skills at various basketball camps.
Playing for Ron and the Lady Trojans has been the happiest experience in my life so far, she said. We look forward to it all year long, and we all take it pretty seriously.
So far, Fanning has been accepted at three colleges: Elmira, St. Bonaventure and Canisius.
I plan to study physical education, because I want to be a phys ed teacher like my father, she said.
Since she was a freshman, Beth has played every position, said Bernhardt. The amazing thing is that, until this season, shes never been a go to girl. Shes a hustler, a banger and a loose-ball artist.