This weekend’s game for the Harvey Norman Ballarat Rush will mark Co-captain Kristy Rinaldi’s 223rd game with the Rush and Lady Miners. Rinaldi’s game tally will equal current game record holder Andrea McMahon who retired in 2013.
McMahon remembers playing with Rinaldi for seven seasons and although she didn’t realise she was the games record holder she is thrilled to share and pass on the title to another local players that has been through the program since juniors. “Kristy’s loyalty speaks for itself” McMahon continued with “it is a great achievement for Kristy to play so many games and continue on in the Lady Miners and Rush program for so many years. She has had a great career so far and I wish her all the best for the rest of it”.
Rinaldi first played for the Lady Miners in 2003 before moving away to Queensland, upon return to Ballarat Rinaldi also re-joined the Lady Miners in 2007 and has continued to play each season racking up her games tally. Rinaldi expressed how proud she is of her achievement “I am super proud of my effort, it has taken many years and many great former and current team mates to get me here” Rinaldi went on to say “Andrea was a great player and to be equalling her record is something pretty special.”
Harvey Norman Ballarat Rush Elite Teams Chair Kym Cassells stated “Kristy has shown a high level of commitment to the Ballarat program over a long period of time and deserves to hold the club record. She has grown through the program to become a leader for the club so this is a fantastic achievement for her.”
Head Coach Peter Cunningham also had nothing but praise for Rinaldi’s efforts over the years adding “Kristy is a multiple MVP award winner and long-time Captain of the Rush who has been a role model to the Rush juniors on what it takes to succeed at SEABL level.” Cunningham continued “Kristy has been a target of opposition defences due to her shooting ability and despite a number of attempts by other teams to secure her services has remained a loyal and committed contributor to the Rush program”. Cunningham finished with “to break Andrea’s record is a wonderful milestone that is a testament to her hard work, durability and sacrifice over a long period of time and I know this will be a proud moment for her that is thoroughly deserved.”
You can help Rinaldi celebrate this milestone by coming to the MARS® MINERDOME on Saturday night when the Harvey Norman Ballarat Rush take on Dandenong from 6pm. The girls will be followed by the GMHBA Ballarat Miners at 8pm when they also take on Dandenong.