(Photo by David Jenkins, Staff)
DEXTER -- Going on four years now, the Heil twins, Katelyn and Cathryn, have been able to play basketball with one another for the Lady Bearcats at Dexter High School.
On Wednesday they each signed a letter of intent to play at Missouri University of Science and Technology, formerly the University of Missouri-Rolla, to continue their playing days for at least four more years.
"I wanted to be with Katelyn," Cathryn said. "We've played a long time together and it just felt right to go with her."
They also felt that the emphasis of biological science that Missouri S&T has in their curriculum will be the best choice for their career paths as well as playing the sport that they have played together since they were little.
"The school is great for biological science also. Cathryn wants to be a veterinarian and I want to go on to be a physical therapist and the school lets us do both. It was just a really good fit all around."
After their senior season at Dexter, the Heil twins will be headed to play for the Lady Miners of Missouri S&T which is coming off of their best season in school history with a 27-4 record and its first trip to the NCAA Division II Tournament in 12 years.
"It's definitely a great opportunity for both of them," Lady Bearcats head coach Chad Allen said. "I'm excited for both of them to get to go to the same school together. I know Missouri S&T is definitely getting a steal by getting both of them together. I'm sure both of them will go in there and make an impact right away and do real well."
Last season for the Lady Bearcats, Katelyn and Cathryn were part of a season that would end up being the second-most wins in school history with a 22-5 record. They were also a part of the school's second district title.
Katelyn led the squad with 18.5 points a game while Cathryn scored 5.2 points a game. Coach Allen said that they each bring something different to the court but, play very similar as well.
"They do play a lot alike, but they do have some differences," Allen said. "Cathryn's probably a little bit more of a slasher. She can really take the ball to the hole. She's great with her left hand too. Katelyn's definitely a great shooter. She's a very hard-nosed player and she's really aggressive. She can also handle the ball real well.
"They will both definitely help Rolla a lot in the future."
Both agreed that having their sister on the court is a big advantage, which is something they will take with them to the next level of competition.
"We definitely breakdown games together," Katelyn said about having Cathryn on the floor with her. "We talk about what each other is doing wrong or doing right. We definitely support each other there 100 percent."
"I think that's going to be exciting," Cathryn said about the next level of competition. "It's going to be fun to step up that one level. We've helped each other and it's been fun growing up with her and playing with her."
And as siblings tend to do when it comes to playing sports, Cathryn said that they work really well with one another and sometimes, sibling competition even makes it better.
"We have our ups and downs," Cathryn said. "We work really well with each other but at the same time we're very competitive with each other. We've definitely had our scrapes and bruises going into the house after playing one-on-one out on the patio."
Whatever the case, patio, Dexter high school or Missouri S&T in the fall, the Heil twins are sure to be on the same court for years to come.