Yellow Jacket Senior Lindsay Meek Has Met Life's Challenges Head-On
After dropping out of college to nurse her dying twin sister through her ordeal with cancer, BW senior basketball player Lindsay Meek has a very clear concept of what is important.
Meek, who is 28 and married, earned a starting spot and became a team leader as the Lady Yellow Jackets rolled to a 23-4 record and a tie for the OAC regular season title. She will graduate in May with a 3.98 average in health and physical education and is looking forward to a career as a teacher and coach.
Lindsay and Laura Meek were outstanding students and basketball players at Port Clinton High School and received full scholarships to the University of Massachusetts at Lowell. They both quickly earned playing time in the Division II program and Laura finished sixth nationally in three-point shooting percentage as a sophomore. But then the diagnosis of brain cancer forced Laura to leave school for treatment and Lindsay decided to leave, too, to care for her.
“I shared a strong connection with my sister,” said Meek. “Maybe it was that identical twin E.S.P., but whatever it was, it seemed to grow when she became ill. I could sense how things were going for Laura. If she felt bad, I felt bad even if I was at work and she was at home.”
“On one particular day, I knew something was wrong, so I called home and one of my family members answered crying,” said Meek. “I had my husband drive me home. The whole way there, Tony went as fast as he could until I told him to slow down because I knew that she wasn’t going to die that day.”
Minutes later, Meek arrived at home to find her sister still alive. She spent the day next to her twin sister and sure enough, Laura would not lose her battle with cancer until the following day.
Not too long thereafter, Meek decided to finish what she started. “I knew that going back to school was something that Laura would have wanted me to do,” said Meek.
Despite not having played intercollegiate basketball for several years, Meek was never far from the game. She coached at a local high school and also played in a competitive men’s league along side her husband Tony.
Seven years removed from intercollegiate athletics, Meek spoke to BW women’s basketball coach Cheri Harrer who said there would be a spot for her on the team.
“At first I did feel as though I had to prove that I belonged,” said Meek. “But after a while, I enjoyed what my teammates had to offer me and vice-versa.”
“Lindsay provides a maturity and a different outlook on life from our usual 18 to 22 year-old team members,” said Harrer. “She has been an excellent leader for us and the players have learned that they can go to her to discuss just about anything.”
During her first season back, Meek played with a torn ACL. She played in 15 games and averaged 2.3 points per game.
“I knew that it would be tough last year, playing with pain and a game knee,” said Meek. “I love the game of basketball so I decided to just play through it.”
This year she increased her scoring average to 5.3 ppg. and was second among regulars in the field shooting connecting on 38 of 70 shots from the floor for 54.3 percent.
Meek’s teammates also took note of the changes Meek made to better her game.
“Lindsay has a great basketball mind and she can see things on the court,” said senior forward Erika Schultz. “ I love being on the floor with her because she can always make that great pass, or set an outstanding screen. Her intangibles make everyone on the floor look good.”
“She works hard during practice and games and seems to be more comfortable and confident this year,” said junior guard Stephanne Musser from Miamisburg. “She puts in a lot of extra time shooting and working on different aspects of the game.”
Meek attributes much of her drive to the memory of her sister. “Laura was someone who would never give up,” said Meek. “She was always living her life to the fullest and she has taught me to do the same.
“Her death helped put things in perspective for me and since then, I have wanted to help and influence the lives of others. That is why I want to teach and coach.”
The Meek family also sponsors an annual golf tournament in Laura’s memory. This will mark the sixth year and to date, the event has generated over $30,000 for cancer research.
“ It is a very rewarding endeavor. I am sure that Laura is smiling every year.”
Among those who know her, no one doubts that they will be hearing more great things in the future from Lindsay Meek.