Richelle “Riki” Carach, senior marketing major, has been playing basketball practically since she began walking.
Carach played at Gulf Coast High School in Naples, Fla. all four years of school and was named the team MVP her sophomore, junior and senior season. In 2010, she was named the Naples Daily News Player of the Year and was a finalist for Miss Basketball of Southwest Florida.
Carach loves everything about the sport, especially the team aspects of it.
“I like the competitiveness as well as the team feeling and helping one another work together to get to one common goal,” said Carach.
During her junior year, Carach and the Sharks made it to the Elite-8 of the NCAA Division II National Championship Tournament, the highest they had ever gone before. They finished the season ranked 12th in the country, which at the time was their highest ranking ever. The beginning of the new season had NSU ranked number four in the preseason polls, the highest in program history.
Every season, Carach has gradually improved her game and statistics, but she knows it takes a lot of hard work to achieve her goal of constantly improving. For her senior season, she is stepping up as a leader and hopes others follow in her footsteps.
“I’m a positive influence. I encourage and I’m a rebounder. I like to work hard and if I’m rebounding well, then my game will be going well,” said Carach.
The 2013/2014 season started on Nov. 9 when #4 NSU hosted the Tip-Off Classic, a four-team tournament that included Barry University, #22 Washburn University, and #7 Stonehill College. Carach started the season off on a high note by scoring 19 points and grabbing seven rebounds against Washburn. The 19 points were her career high, until the next day when NSU played Stonehill and Carach scored 20 and tied a career high with 13 rebounds.
She and her teammates will travel to Louisville, Ky. to continue their schedule on Nov. 23 against Kentucky State University.
Playing at NSU has meant the world to Carach. She said it was one of the best opportunities she’s been handed and is grateful to be in South Florida playing the sport she loves.
I sat down with Carach to ask her a few questions.
What was your most memorable moment for basketball?
In high school, I won Player of the Year.
Do you have any rituals before each game?
I just like to stay loose.
Would you rather score a game-winning shot or game-winning block?
Either one to be honest.
Who would you like to play 1-on-1 with?
No shot I would ever win but Kevin Durant.
Who is your favorite athlete?
My dad. He taught me everything there is with sports. He’s pushed me throughout my entire life.
What are some of your favorite movies?
“Step Brothers,” “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby” and “Bridesmaids”
Who would play you in a movie based on your life?
Will Ferrell in drag.