BP’s Marecic decides on Drexel
Dreams do come true. Just ask Megan Marecic. The rising Bethel Park senior lives by such a philosophy.
“If you dream it, then you can do it,” says the 17-year-old daughter of Kathy and Tom Marecic. “If you really believe in something and you work hard, then anything is possible.”
Hard work, indeed, has transformed all of Marecic’s fantasies into reality. Her most recent vision came to fruition when she made a verbal commitment to play her college basketball for Drexel University, located in Philadelphia. She selected the Dragons over Seton Hall, Providence and Stetston University, located in Florida.
“Drexel was my first visit and I fell in love with the school,” she said. “I wasn’t sure of living at a city school but I loved the campus. It was nothing like I thought it would be.
“When you know it, you know it,” she continued. “Plus, it had the program I wanted to study.”
Marecic plans to become a physician’s assistant. At Drexel, the program requires a six-year study.
An anatomy class sparked Marecic’s interest. After she witnessed open-heart surgery, she was sold on the profession.
“It was cool,” she said of the procedure. “I was amazed by it all.
“In the beginning, I was uncomfortable until I was actually seeing what they were doing. I was so focused on what they were doing that I forgot all about it. Then you realize, if they didn’t do this, then the patient would die.”
Two seasons ago, Marecic thought her dream of playing college ball had died. She suffered an ACL tear in her left knee during a summer AAU game between her freshman and sophomore seasons.
“It was May 28,” she said clearly remembering the date. “It was a morning game and we were still waking up. I sprinted down the court on a breakaway and as I was passing the ball my left leg buckled.”
On June 20, Dr. Bradley performed the surgery. After an extensive rehab program at David Physical Therapy and Sports Medicine Center, she was cleared for practice. Six months later, she played her first game against Moon in December. Marecic never missed a beat.
A three-time Almanac all-star, she has surpassed 1,000 points in her career. She averaged 15 points and six rebounds this past winter and led Bethel Park to its first WPIAL championship in school history. The Hawks finished 23-4 overall last winter.
“I’m not worried about the injury. I play without thinking anything will happen,” she says.
“But,” she added of the trial, “I learned a lot. Hard work can get you to where you need to be. Everybody said that I would miss my sophomore year but I played right away.”
Since she started accompanying her older sisters, Kaitlin and Emily, to their practices, Marecic has played right away. She excelled in elementary school, leading St. Gabriel of the Sorrowful Virgin in Whitehall to a state championship in eighth grade and a runner-up finish in seventh. Unlike her sisters, who went on to play at Seton-La Salle, Marecic matriculated to Bethel Park.
“I learned a lot from my sisters because I was always taken along to their games and practices. They instilled in me a ‘love of the game’ and a desire to get better. They inspired me.
“But, I wanted to go to Bethel. I liked how big the school was and the fact that there were a lot of class choices. Plus, I liked how not everybody knew who I was.”
Marecic made a name for herself immediately. By fine-tuning her shot, with the help of Jay Monahan, she adjusted quickly to the scholastic game. By sticking to a strict workout regiment, she had honed her skills to the point that she has the ability to play all the positions, except center. At Drexel, she’ll likely play the 2 or 3 spot.
“They like my versatility. That was my biggest asset,” she said. “I like to be on the perimeter, shoot, drive or dish up the assist.”
But, it’s taken time to craft her skills, Marecic says. “Each morning she wakes up and works with the shooting gun on her shot. When school is in session, she starts at 6 a.m. During the summer, she starts at 7 a.m.
“There are so many areas I need to improve,” she explained, specifying defense and ball handling in particular. “They definitely need to get better.”
As a senior and a returning champion, Marecic knows she and her team are marked. Yet, the objective remains constant.
“Winning the WPIAL title was the highlight so far in my career. It was an awesome experience. Crazy,” she said. “And the energy,” she added. “So the goal is to get another WPIAL championship and do better at states.”
After winning the district title, BP lost in the first round of the PIAA tournament, falling to Mt. Lebanon. The Hawks have played the Blue Devils five times in each of the past two seasons.
“It’s hard to play the same opponent that many times,” she explained. “We definitely thought we could have beaten them in states. We’ll have to do better.”
For Marecic, there was nothing better than playing the WPIAL title in front of a capacity crowd at the A.J. Palumbo Center at Duquesne University. “That was really awesome. It’s something I’m looking forward to doing again and once I get to college, the atmosphere is going to be similar.”
Now that she has her college decision out of the way, Marecic is looking forward to her senior season.
“I’m glad I made my decision. I feel better and I’m excited about it. I made a great choice. Definitely,” she said. “The thing I am looking forward to is the basketball season. I’m so excited for that.”
Megan Marecic file
Birthdate: July 22, 1995
Parents: Kathy and Tom
Siblings: Kaitlin, Emily
College choice: Drexel
Career path: Physican’s Assistant
Activities: National Honor Society
Favorite class: Anatomy, chemistry
Least liked class: History
Favorite food: seafood.
Best restaurant: Saga Japanese Steakhouse
Twitter or Facebook? I don’t have a Facebook account and I don’t use Twitter much. I don’t get into it. I might use it when I want to talk to my friends. I usually get my news from friends or my mom. But, USA Today has a pretty neat App.
My cell is a? iPhone 4S
Thirst quencher? Gatorade Frost.
Favorite girl player: Diana Taurasi from the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury
Favorite guy player: Kobe Bryant. Not personally, but strictly from a basketball standpoint. You can’t take away his skill. (Kobe) works hard.
Best book: “Twilight.” I loved the first book. The movie though was disappointing.