Posted On: 04/10/19 5:37 PM
One player who most in the state might not know is Maya Barakat. The 5’11 forward from Crestwood sat out her junior season all but one regular season game due to injury. She was already getting some college interest, but that was put on hold due to injury. Barakat is looking to use this spring and summer to boost her stock back up. She’s a fairly mobile forward who can carve out space well to receive the ball. Her ability to rebound the ball is a huge boost as well. Even though she didn’t play much her junior year, Barakat still feels like she improved as a person and a player.
“I was sidelined most of the season because I tore my ACL over the summer,” Barakat said. “I actually returned the last game of our regular season and continued into districts. But overall the season went well being able to be there for my team even though I couldn’t be on the floor with them. I felt it was very important to be a leader on the sidelines.”
Barakat is working on expanding her game out to the perimeter. Once this happens Barakat is going to be able to play a much more dynamic role. She has touch around the basket and expanding her game out will make her that much more dangerous. Defensively she is solid and adding a little more vertical quickness will help her out a ton.
“This summer I’m trying to develop my shot a lot more,” Barakat said. “I am working on getting better at ball handling and getting all around stronger. I feel that my strength and my inside game are my strongest suits along with rebounding which is one of my favorite things to do. My weaknesses are not shooting as much as I’m capable of and I’m a little weak on the ball handling side but I’m hoping to improve all of that this summer going into my senior year.”
Despite missing a chunk of the season last year, Barakat is already receiving college interest. She is hearing the most right now from Concordia-Ann Arbor, Macomb Community College, and Michigan-Dearborn. She has been invited to a few open gyms and is going to start putting together a list of places she wants to visit over the next year or so. With Barakat’s game on display this summer, you can expect many more small colleges to start showing interest.
“In my future college I’m looking for a friendly and welcoming school that is willing to help me improve and play at the next level as well as begin preparing for my career,” Barakat said.