Welcome to the Club

Seniors Joe Fitzgerald and Annelise Dexter each joined PA basketball’s elite 1000-point Club this season.
It was a special season for PA basketball with seniors Joe Fitzgerald and Annelise Dexter netting their 1000th points.
It was a special season for PA basketball with seniors Joe Fitzgerald and Annelise Dexter netting their 1000th points.
Abdalla Faiad

For a Spartan basketball player, the 1000-point Club is the pinnacle of individual success at Pembroke Academy. 

Rick Morrill was the first member of the 1000-point Club in 1965, and in nearly 60 years since Morrill achieved the milestone, only 17 athletes—for both the boys and girls’ varsity teams at PA— have been initiated into the club. 

This season, two players, seniors Annelise Dexter and Joe Fitzgerald, joined. 

On Dec. 29, Dexter netted her 1000th point against John Stark Regional, and on Feb. 9, Fitzgerald joined her, scoring his 1000th point against Kennett High School. 

“It meant a lot to me as it has been a goal I’ve had for a long time,” Dexter said. “Scoring [the 1000th point] with all my friends and family watching made me feel like all the money and time spent on basketball was worth it.” 

Fitzgerald agrees with Dexter. His membership into the elite club also “meant a lot” to him as well. 

“I’ve been dreaming about reaching this milestone since I was a young kid,” he said. “It also meant a lot to my family to enshrine the Fitzgerald name into PA history.”

This marked only the second time that two players have scored their 1000th points in the same season. In 2019, Noah Cummings and Sean Menard also accomplished the feat.

To put into context how unique of an achievement this is for these two individuals, one only has to  crunch the numbers

From 1965 to the present day, there are typically 15 players on a varsity roster, which means only about 1 percent of varsity basketball players who have ever put on a PA uniform have reached this mark.

“Seeing Joe get to 1000 points was amazing,” said Coach Donnell, the head coach of the boys’ varsity team. “He works so hard at his craft and strives for perfection. Joe is a fierce competitor at practice and games but also very caring towards his teammates. He doesn’t like to let them down and gives everything he has at all times.”

For both players, their ultimate goal was to win a state championship, but both varsity teams were eliminated in the playoffs. 

While both players are clearly talented on the court, their dedication and discipline off the court can also be attributed to their success. Many athletes stand out on their respective game performances, it takes a special discipline to shine in the classroom as well. 

And both Dexter and Fitzgerald also have a strong focus on their schoolwork.

“It’s super important to me,” Dexter said. “It’s always been academics first before athletics. I want to set myself up for a successful career after I’m done playing basketball in college.”

Fitzgerald also understands the importance of keeping up good grades alongside his athletics. 

Being a student always comes first,” he said. “That’s the way I was raised. Failing a class, or not doing well in a class equals no basketball.”

In a year that has seen many challenges for PA, the accomplishments of these two athletes are a welcomed boon .

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