With years of history and Lady Cat Basketball success represented, the 4th Annual Angela Mallonee Garbee Alumni Game was held at Keeter Gymnasium Saturday evening. A host of players, several of whom have jerseys hanging from the gym rafters (Cara Painter Stone, Janessa Demuth Hughes, Kayli Combs Price, Katie Howard Clopton, and Kelsie Cleeton), came back to their alma mater for fun, competition, and a worthy cause.
Each year, Lady Cat Basketball hosts the alumni game as a fundraiser and to remember one of their own, Angela Mallonee Garbee. Angela played for the Lady Cats from 1997-2001. She graduated in 2001 with a degree in Physical Education and went on to teach and coach at Crane High School. Later in her professional career, Angela became an administrator at Christian Ministries Academy, a Christian school started by her church. Angela began the basketball and volleyball programs at the school and coached the teams. She coached with the same passion she had for life, emphasizing hard work, competitiveness, and character. Most importantly, Angela lived out those traits and brought numerous people to know the Lord. Her faithfulness to her savior was demonstrated in how she interacted with others, boldly inviting them to church and telling them how the Lord had blessed her life even during her battle with brain cancer.
Nearly 20 former Lady Cat greats participated in the event that included the game, as well as competitions between quarters and at halftime. Children of the alumni were invited out on the court for some of the competitions and some of the former Lady Cat greats competed in a three-point contest at halftime. Kayli Combs Price took home the prize for her continued sharp shooting abilities, and a great time was had by all in attendance. During halftime, the 2022-2023 Lady Bobcats were introduced, as well as the newly inaugurated, 17th President of the College of the Ozarks, Dr. Brad and Mrs. Laura Johnson.
Current Lady Cats head coach, Becky Mullis commented; “Angela was my teammate during our playing days at C of O and remained one of my best friends throughout her life. She was a wonderful person who personified what it means to be a C of O Lady Cat. Personally, it brings me great joy to celebrate her life by naming our game as well as the scholarship after her. This event is a great way for former players and fans to reconnect and it’s always a lot of fun to see the kids of our alumni playing and having a good time together following the game. It is definitely a rewarding experience for everyone involved.”
All proceeds from the game go toward the Angela Mallonee Garbee Scholarship Fund, which goes to a CofO graduating senior majoring in PE with an interest in coaching, who exhibit financial need, a strong work ethic, and high character. The 2022 recipient of the scholarship, April Earls, was recognized during halftime of the game.
The Lady Cats wish to thank all the alumni that helped make this event a success and a special thank you to all who donated to the Angela Mallonee Garbee Scholarship Fund.