WOOD RIVER - Junior Mallory Martin was one of the hardest workers on the girl's basketball team at East Alton-Wood River High School, helping to play a key role in the Oilers' resurgence this season, as EAWR ended up with an 18-11 record in 2019-20.

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For her accomplishments on the court this season, Martin has been named the Riverbender.com Female Athlete of the Month at EAWR for February 2020.

Martin, who played for recently retired coach Joe Parmentier, has played basketball since third grade and enjoys the bond she has between herself and her teammates.

"I have been playing since third grade," Martin said, "and what I like most about it is that every time I step on the court, my teammates become family, and for those 32 minutes, there is nothing stronger than the bond we have on the floor."

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Martin takes inspiration from her late aunt, Heather Francis, for her performance on the court.

"My aunt, Heather Francis, is my everyday motivation," Martin said. "She passed away from cancer in November of 2019, and she really taught me to be strong and achieve as much as I could."

Martin credits her work ethic and her perseverance as her major qualities and feels that basketball has helped to teach her to keep pursuing her dreams, no matter what.

"It has helped me develop in the person I am today by improving my work ethic," Martin said. "It's shown me I can't just dream, I have to work as hard as I can to achieve my dreams."

Martin enjoys hanging out with her friends away from basketball, and also played for the EAWR girls volleyball team as an outside hitter. She hopes to continue to play basketball in college but hasn't yet decided where to attend school. She's looking into going into the medical field and study Pediatric Oncology, with a long term goal of doing cancer research.

Riverbender.com's Athlete of the Month program is made possible by the generosity of our sponsors and the cooperation of our area high schools. This is a great accomplishment, and one to be very proud of. Please join us in congratulating this young athlete. We at Riverbender.com wish you continued success in your future!

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