Senior forward Frannie Hottinger is going out in style with a record-breaking final season on the women’s basketball team.
After scoring 593 points throughout the year, Hottinger became the all-time single-season leading scorer in Lehigh women’s basketball, passing forward Jessica DePalo’s previous record of 549 points in the 2003-2004 season.
Hottinger said she didn’t expect to set any records and was only focused on winning. With three weeks left in the season, her point scoring accumulated and she found herself 40 points away from reaching the leading scorer title.
Once she accomplished her feat against Bucknell on Feb. 22, Hottinger said she was even more excited about the record after learning how long it had stood untouched.
“It was really cool to know that it was a 19-year-old record,” Hottinger said. “I was probably 3 years old when it happened.”
The senior did not have it easy getting to where she is now.
After averaging nearly eight points per game in her freshman year, experiencing a halt in play due to the COVID-19 pandemic during her sophomore year and being sidelined for half of her junior year due to a ankle injury, Hottinger said she is happy to have been able to show off her skills in her final season.
She said all of these obstacles made setting the record even more satisfying.
“My career stats and career legacy isn’t huge, so it is really nice to go out and have a record-breaking single season,” Hottinger said.
Hottinger used film to help implement new additions to her game. She said doing so allowed her to get a better grasp of her play, which made it feel slower compared to earlier seasons.
Her extra dedication has shown itself on the court by averaging 20 points per game this season, earning the Patriot League Player of the Year award.
One of Hottinger’s strengths is her ability to score from all parts of the court. She has made 33 3-point shots this year, leading all of the team’s forwards and setting a personal career high.
“I’m continuing to work on the mid-range and the 3-point shot, and I want to be a matchup issue for every team,” Hottinger said.
Hottinger said she has developed a keen eye for improvement from balancing her game, which has allowed her to convert more shots from under the basket.
Junior guard Mackenzie Kramer had high praise for the senior and said she expected Hottinger to achieve a record like this.
“She has always been as great of a player as she’s been now,” Kramer said. “The Frannie (Hottinger) you are seeing now is a large part of who she’s been. She just hasn’t been able to show that due to different factors, such as injuries.”
Coach Addie Micir also celebrated the record holder, reflecting on Hottinger’s growth over the years.
Micir, who was the assistant coach during Hottinger’s freshman year, attributes Hottinger’s development to her work ethic.
“Every coach knew she was going to be really good from her first practice here,” Micir said.
After defeating Navy and finishing third in the Patriot League standings, Hottinger doesn’t give herself all the credit for the team’s success. She said the team has improved significantly, and she has improved alongside them.
Lehigh will face Holy Cross, a team Lehigh has both won and lost to, in a semifinal game on March 9.
“The only thing that matters from here on out is winning, so I will do whatever it takes for us to win,” Hottinger said. “I think we have a lot more season left.”
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