STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAW) -- UW-Stevens Point's 88-75 win over UW-Eau Claire on January 26, felt like any other win the team had experienced this season. At least at first.
"To be honest we had no idea," freshman Amber Baehman said. "So going into that game and starting off pretty strong, we couldn't have asked for a better win to be honest. Then heading up to the locker room, we got told 'keep it a surprise about coach coming up,' and we asked why."
Without even knowing it, coaching in her 800th game at UWSP, head coach Shirley Egner had earned her 300th WIAC conference win, becoming the first coach in WIAC women's basketball history to accomplish the feat. But Egner was just happy to get the win over a conference rival.
"Two weeks prior we got drilled by Eau Claire here, and Zorn Arena is a really difficult place to play, and we went over there and played really well," Egner said. "When they yelled congratulations and all this stuff, I was just like yeah I'm happy we won the game. That milestone is fantastic but we're trying to build on what we're doing this season and so that's where my mind was."
But that didn't make the moment any less special for Egner and her team.
"It was emotional," UWSP junior Carly Cerrato said. "She got emotional. We got emotional. We got emotional and just realized how much of an impact she's had on Stevens Point for the women's basketball program. Then after the game I saw on Twitter some alumni tweeting some really nice things about her. It was really cool to see the impact she's had on so many people's lives."
Which shouldn't come as much of a surprise, considering Egner's coaching philosophy.
"We try to treat them like they're our daughters, and try to have them be disciplined and responsible and accountable and make good decisions. To learn those tough life lessons along the way. I do care about them," Egner said.
She says this latest achievement isn't just about her, or the players on this year's team.It's also about the Pointers who came before, and helped pave the way for an impressive milestone.
"Thank you. They've put UW-Stevens Point women's basketball on the map, and that's what we want."