Local Sports

June 19, 2014

Ruth Riley retires after 13 seasons in WNBA

She was a memberof 2004 Olympic gold medalist team


Riley graduated from Notre Dame in 2001 with a degree in psychology, having made the Dean’s List every semester. She finished her Notre Dame career with 2,072 points, and school records for rebounds (1,007), blocked shots (370), and field goal percentage (.632).

Riley hails from Macy, population 209, in northern Miami County located 27 miles northeast of Logansport.

She was 6 feet tall by the time she was 12 years old.

During her four years at North Miami she scored 1,372 points, acquired 1,011 rebounds and blocked 427 shots. She averaged 26 points a game as a senior, and had her jersey number (25) retired by the high school. She was an Indiana All-Star in 1997.

North Miami won its second ever sectional title Riley’s junior season in 1996. The Warriors lost to No. 14-ranked Logansport in the sectional final her senior year in 1997.

Said Riley on “Success in life is never an individual accomplishment — it is always a culmination of those who inspire you to chase your dreams, encourage you along the long road of achievement, and who impart the necessary knowledge. There are also those who give you the physical tools, who grant you the opportunity, and last but not least, those who work alongside you every day in pursuit of mutual goals. What started in the fourth grade with a little orange ball, a lot of height, a tad bit of coordination, and a huge dream of playing in the Olympics has transpired to an amazing journey from Macy, Indiana to some of the greatest stages professional basketball has to offer.

“While I have cherished every moment of preparation and competition that this game I love has allotted me, my life as a professional athlete has always been about something greater than the sport itself -- it is the bond that I built with my teammates, the experiences of living in foreign countries, and the platform to make a meaningful contribution to this world. As I think back over all my years playing basketball, I see the faces of my teammates, hear the voices of my coaches (some louder than others), feel the love and encouragement of my family, friends and fans, and I am consumed with gratitude. Reflecting over my career, my mind wanders back to the summer of 1997 when I was sitting in my living room in our little farmhouse outside of Macy, Ind., watching the inaugural game of the WNBA. About to head off to Notre Dame for my freshman season, my class was unique in the sense that we were the first class to enter college knowing there was the opportunity to play in the WNBA after we graduated.”

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