Francesca Belibi, 15, didn’t start playing basketball until she entered high school. Her parents are doctors and they couldn’t find the time to fit hoops into the family’s schedule, according to The Denver Post.
Fast forward one year, and Belibi has become the first girl to dunk in a high school game in Colorado.
The 6’1″ sophomore at Regis Jesuit threw down with one hand on Friday night after stealing a pass at mid-court in the first quarter.
Belibi told the Aurora Sentinel after the game that the dunk even surprised her.
I didn’t expect it to be honest with you. I don’t know, I just did it. I didn’t realize it went in until I heard the crowd and heard the snap (of the rim). Then I definitely heard my teammates. I think the crowd definitely understands the importance behind it — the first girl to dunk — but it was completely unexpected.”
She had dunked in practice before, but never in a live game. She had the confidence to try it on Friday in part because of a supportive head coach, Carl Mattei,
“It’s a shot, just like a 3-point shot, so I tell her if you want to try it, go for it,” Mattei told the Aurora Sentinel. “It was amazing, it was a real thrill. I had to call a time out, everyone was screaming. It’s just unseen.”
What will we see next out of Belibi? Time will tell, but it’s likely to take place above the rim.