Former GCC standout Carolyn Appleby joins coaching staff

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Thursday, November 21, 2019 | 8:03 PM


Carolyn Appleby couldn’t help herself.

During a water break this week at a Greensburg Central Catholic girls basketball practice, she took a few pull-up jump shots and banked in a scoop-shot layup as players looked on.

Make that, as her players looked on.

Appleby, just 22 years old and barely out of college, has joined the coaching staff at her alma mater as a volunteer assistant.

The former IUP standout played in the last two NCAA Division II Final Fours and led the Crimson Hawks to the No. 1 ranking in the country last season. Now, it’s time to see what this coaching thing is about.

“I have only been out of the game for a short time, but I miss it,” Appleby said. “(GCC athletic director Dan Mahoney) had mentioned coaching to me before and I thought about it. It’s great to come back to my alma mater. With my experience and knowledge, I feel like I can help the girls. I can attest to what they’re going through.

“I want to do whatever I can to help them.”

A natural scorer, Appleby can help perimeter shooters and work to improve a backcourt that includes senior Melina Maietta, a player who is similar to Appleby in her ability to shoot the ball.

“It’s different, for sure,” Appleby said of working with the players. “It’s a different perspective, but I like it.”

Appleby, a 1,000-point scorer at GCC and IUP, is a welcome addition.

“She’s a winner,” GCC head coach Sam Salih said. “When she said she wanted to join the staff, I didn’t have to think about it too long. She was in the Final Four last year. She brings the on- and off-the-court experience. She can show our girls real-life situations. It’s great to have her here.”

Salih said Appleby rounds out his group of coaches.

“Now I have two point guards on staff,” Salih said, referring to another assistant, Chris Skatell. “Two point guards and a ref (Mike Gaffney).”

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@tribweb.com or via Twitter .

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