Since moving to Sarasota from Maine one year ago, sophomore Camille Giardina has been an asset to the Lady Cougars varsity basketball team. Despite an injury early in the season, the 15-year-old point guard is back on the court full of energy and passion, and continues to be the top scorer for the team. In the off-season, Giardina plays for a traveling AAU basketball team.
How did you start playing basketball?
When the rec league started up in the winter when I was in first grade in Maine. I was an athlete and played whatever sport was offered each season.
What are your strengths as a player?
I would say my strengths are that I am good at defense and have good vision. I’m athletic so that allows me to do a lot and handle the ball. Also, my mindset — I don’t let things get me down; I just keep going and give it my best.
What is the highest number of points you have ever scored in one game?
I don’t know! Between rec and travel, I think I almost hit the 50-(point) mark once, when I lived in Maine.
Is there someone you admire in basketball?
I don’t really admire anyone. I just kind of rely on my coaches to keep pushing me and watch better players that make me want to reach my full potential. And the support from my coaches and fans.
What is your favorite basketball memory?
I was on my third-grade travel team and we were practicing and jacking up shots. My friend and I made a bet about who could make a half-court shot. We bet $10. I swooshed it in on my first try. I actually never collected the $10. We just kept it up as a joke and I would say, “You still owe me that 10 bucks from third grade,” and we would laugh about it.
Do you plan on playing in college?
Yes, but I don’t have any favorite school. I want to keep my mind open to whatever options and opportunities I get. I’m from the North so I could go back up there and I love the Carolinas. I’ll just keep playing and see what offers I get and take it from there.
Did you get to pick your number?
When I played with travel up in Maine I got 22. I fought for it every year so people would know it was me. So, when I started here I asked for it, and they gave me the number. I believe it’s lucky.
What lessons have you learned from basketball?
You can never give up. If you give it your all, the outcome will usually portray it. Heart is key and you have to want it — ability doesn’t always win the game.
What kind of shoes do you wear?
I wear Nikes. I was in desperate need of new shoes after my season playing with AAU. I went through a new pair of shoes in one season. So when I needed new ones for the high school season I decided to get these Hyperdunks that really stand out and make me noticeable.