Player Profile: Madelyn Stephen
As we move towards the start of the season I will not only be giving you previews of most of the conferences in Southeastern Illinois and all of the teams in those conferences, I will also be profiling many of…
As we move towards the start of the season I will not only be giving you previews of most of the conferences in Southeastern Illinois and all of the teams in those conferences, I will also be profiling many of the girls that you see on the rankings of top players in the state. I will use the same set of questions with each player, but of course the answers they provide and my experiences watching that player will cause each article to be a little different.
Our next player is Madelyn Stephen a 5’11 2019 Forward from Edwardsville. Madelyn has spent most of her high school career in the shadows, lurking, waiting her turn. That is the life of a player, sometimes, in a top program like Edwardsville. She has waited her turn behind top players like Rachel Pranger, Kate Martin, Makenzie Silvey, etc. She has even had the experience of being in the shadow at home where her brother is Oliver Stephen. Oliver plays at SWIC and was a 1,000 point scorer at EHS. But, Madelyn has worked hard, got better, put in the time and kept a good attitude.
Madelyn considers her shooting and passing as her best skills on the basketball court. She is definitely a weapon at the high post as a stretch 4. During her career she has proven she can hit the open mid range jumper and has range to outside the 3 point line like her favorite player Steph Curry. She has made it a point to work on her ability to get to the basket once the defenders close out strong to try to eliminate that outside shot. I have been impressed watching her this summer in her ability to seal off defenders in the post. Once she gets you in a bad spot she is excellent at not letting you go.
During the spring and summer not only was she working on her game in the gym, Madelyn got in many games too. In addition to the EHS team playing team camps at Louisville and Mizzou they also hosted the EHS tourney which they won. There was a very high level of competition in these events and Madelyn thinks it really helped the team grow and bond together. When she was not with the school team Madelyn played with the Blue Star Silvey team. They played a full spring schedule and spent the summer at back to back NCAA events in Louisville and finished off at the National Championships in Atlanta. During the final tourney in Atlanta they were able to advance to the championship game in their bracket. Madelyn calls the Atlanta trip her favorite of her basketball career as they were downtown in Atlanta and were able to experience the Georgia Aquarium, CNN and Olympic park. It was a great bonding experience for the team to finish their AAU careers.
As she moves into her senior year the EHS team is excited for the season. Madelyn and her teammates understand that they have graduated a ton of talent over the past two years. They are motivated and excited to prove that Edwardsville girls basketball will continue to be a team to reckon with despite those players being gone. As I mentioned before, she may have been in the shadow but now it is time to step up and show her talents. If Madelyn is able to keep working on getting her shots off quicker and finding other ways to score besides the spot up jumper, I have no doubt she can help Coach Blade continue the tradition of winning that has been established. Madelyn showed during the summer for Blue Star that she can put the ball in the basket consistently. This will be important as the team looks to replace its top 3 scorers from last year.
Because of her outstanding academic record and her developing game Madelyn has been in contact with a few schools about continuing her career after high school. She is unsure of where she will go but plans to visit Emmanuel College in Boston, Wittenberg University in Springfield, OH and is also in contact with Greenville University and Fontbonne University in the local area. Madelyn is planning to pursue a degree in either Sports Management of a general Business degree.
I have personally witnessed the time, effort, blood and sweat that Madelyn has put into the game over the past 6-8 years and I am excited to see her get the opportunity to contribute for her school team and pursue a goal of playing in college. Madelyn is a team player that will be an excellent addition to any college that lands her services.