With only one victory, the varsity basketball team at the Institute of Notre Dame is having a tough year. Competing in a heavyweight Interscholastic Athletic Association A conference against the likes of St. Frances Academy, Archbishop Spalding and Seton Keough, the Indians have struggled to find their footing.
Yet Colleen Berlin, a 17-year-old senior and a parishioner of St. Agnes in Catonsville, isn’t letting the record get her down. A forward and captain, Berlin is known for lifting the spirits of her teammates.
“I try to encourage everyone during warm-ups and tell everyone to play their best,” she said. “Even though it’s been a rough season, everyone plays hard. It’s important to at least go down with a fight because we want to keep our pride.”
Berlin and her teammates are focused on a trip to the Towson Center Jan. 29 (7:30 p.m.), for the 44th annual Mercy-IND game.
Bob Jones, IND’s assistant coach, said Berlin’s positive attitude goes a long way.
“She’s always hustling, always smiling and always comes to practice ready to give 110 percent,” he said. “You wish you had several more like her.”
Berlin played junior varsity basketball in her freshman year. In her sophomore and junior years, she played varsity indoor soccer before joining varsity basketball this season.
Lacrosse is her strongest sport, and Colleen has started on the varsity throughout her IND tenure. She had 42 goals and three assists last season, helping her team make it to the semifinals in the B Conference.
“The thing I enjoy about lacrosse is the quickness of it,” said Colleen, a midfielder who accepted a partial scholarship to play for Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
Holding a 3.6 grade point average, Berlin excels in the classroom. She is involved in several service clubs at IND and works in the school’s peer ministry program. She also is active in her parish’s youth ministry.