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MBA Student to enter Hall of Fame

Hall of Fame: Hedderson makes induction a family affair joining grandfather

 

St. Anne's Brittany Hedderson hangs from the hoop while cutting off the net after her team won the OFSAA girls' AAAA basketball championship at St. Anne high school in 2007. Windsor Star

For Brittany Hedderson, it will be a family affair.

Hedderson’s grandfather, Bernie Newman, was inducted into the Windsor/Essex County Sports Hall of Fame in 1991. On Friday, Hedderson will be one of eight people that will join Newman in the hall when the 37th class is inducted at the Caboto Club.

“It’s pretty crazy,” the 27-year-old Hedderson said. “I remember growing up and going to Devonshire Mall and seeing my grandfather’s picture. He passed away when I was five and it’s a huge honour just to be next to him in the same situation.”

Hedderson played many sports growing up, but none that motivated her like basketball.

“My dad wanted me to play baseball and my mom wanted me to play volleyball, but ultimately basketball won over,” Hedderson said. “Nothing’s more team based, with five on a court working together, than basketball.”

Hedderson started playing in Grade 3 with the Riverside Falcons program and was a standout at St. Anne high school where head coach Andy Kiss moved the five-foot-nine Hedderson to guard.

“Andy Kiss knew I wasn’t a forward,” Hedderson said. “It helped me hone my skills because we never posted up. It was more of a motion offence and I also realized, even though I was the tallest until about Grade 8, that there were kids a lot bigger than me out there and I wasn’t going to be a big kid.”

Between 2004 and 2008, Hedderson helped St. Anne to a 46-7 record and led the team in scoring — which includes a school record 39 in one game — rebounds, assists, free throws and shooting percentage.

St. Anne claimed the OFSAA girls’ AAAA basketball title in 2007 and she became just the sixth person to win the Royal Arcanum Award as the top female high school athlete twice in her career.

Hedderson was also named first-team, All-Canadian and Miss Basketball Ontario after three years for the provincial team.

She had plenty of options after high school, but opted to accept a scholarship to the University of Buffalo.

“I think the biggest thing was they started recruiting me out of Grade 9 or 10,” Hedderson said. “They followed me my whole four years.

“I’m a pretty loyal person and appreciated they wanted me and I didn’t want to be someone’s second choice. They had faith in me.”

She led the team with 106 assists in her freshman season and by the end of her career Hedderson was ranked fourth in scoring (1,462 points), fourth in field goals (555), third in three-point shots (161) and eighth in assists (311). A Mid-American Conference all-star, she was one of only two players in school history to score more than 1,400 points and contribute 300 assists.

In 2012 Hedderson attended the WNBA Combine in Denver and played in Thailand and then in Finland before an Achilles’ tendon injury eventually ended her career.

“Although I would love to play forever, one or two years would have ultimately satisfied me, but I have no regret walking away,” Hedderson said.

She helped out coaching with Kiss at St. Clair College while she recuperated and worked with Team Ontario for three years before heading back to school to obtain her MBA at the Odette School of Business. Now finished, she hopes to continue coaching in the future.

“It was a way to go back to my roots and pay it forward,” Hedderson said. “If it wasn’t for coaches, there wouldn’t be athletes.”