Dana Dempsey has dissected many defenses over the last four years as a guard on the Case Western Reserve University women's basketball team. Dempsey recorded her 900th career point on Friday, February 16, and by the end of the weekend moved into the 10th spot on the Spartans' all-time scoring list with 922.
During this past off-season, the Brooklyn High School valedictorian began dissecting something much more complicated than University Athletic Association (UAA) opponents, a conference that currently boasts five of the country's top 25 women's teams. She took a human anatomy class in the fall and worked one-on-one with a prosector of human cadavers at Case.
"I was able to form a relationship that allowed me to then perform dissections with him and eventually by myself," Dempsey said. "I was dissecting cadavers in an ice cold lab every weekend sweating and reeking of formaldehyde."
The senior nutrition/premed major begun to lean toward being a physician's assistant (PA) last year due to escalating medical malpractice insurance and long hours. Upon graduation this spring and after her recent experience in the lab, Dempsey is taking a year off to hopefully work in an internship with her brother- in-law, a spinal cord surgeon in North Carolina.
"I want to get my foot in the door and see what's out there," said Dempsey, a three-time UAA All-Academic selection. "In a year or so I will take the MCAT [Medical College Admissions Test] and then decide if I really want to go to medical school or be a PA."
Dempsey, who remains Brooklyn High's all-time leading scorer (men and women) with 1,447 points, will play in her last collegiate game Saturday when the Spartans travel to Atlanta to face Emory University in their season finale. Although it is unlikely the two-time All-UAA honoree will become only the eighth women's player in school history to score 1,000 points, 10 points this weekend would move her into the ninth spot on the career points list.
"To know that I was close to getting 1,000 points makes me proud of what I was able to accomplish here," Dempsey said.
For all aspiring collegiate players at home the key to Dempsey's success on the basketball court at Case is as simple as expensive dark chocolate and neatly packaged gum. "I usually eat Ghirardelli chocolate before and chew gum during the game," Dempsey revealed. "I am obsessed with Orbit, because it's little and individually wrapped." We won't tell where she keeps an extra stick or two during contests.
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