Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Bonded by basketball

Sports can always bring a family close.

Basketball has done that for Alex and Mary Merg.

It’s what kept them close growing up and it’s what gave them their competitive edge.

In their first year of Warhawk basketball, Alex and Mary Merg have been big factors. Alex has played in 16 games for the ’Hawks and started one, contributing to a 14-7 record. Mary has played in 20 games, starting 19 of them. Mary averages six points a game, helping the No. 23 ranked ’Hawks to a 16-5 record.

They were both known for their competitiveness at Greendale High School and they both have a deep passion for the activity that has become their way of life.

Ever since they were little, Alex and Mary Merg have been involved in basketball. Their father, Randy, and mother, Jean, both played basketball at UW-Stout, so basketball is in their genes.

“Both my husband and myself played basketball in high school and in college,” Jean Merg said. “Randy got involved in coaching when Alex was little, then I got involved into coaching when Mary was little. We also helped out with their youth basketball leagues.”

Both standouts in high school, Alex and Mary’s decision to come to UW-Whitewater was a coincidence.

Alex, a sophomore academically, was hurt his freshman season so he couldn’t play. His decision to come to UW-Whitewater was easy.

“Alex was recruited and was interested in UW-Whitewater because they have a good business school; it was a good fit for basketball too,” Jean said.

Graduating high school a year later, Mary also decided to go to UW-Whitewater, but not because of Alex.

“I didn’t choose this school because of my brother; I chose it from an academic standpoint,” Mary said. “They had my major and I knew the women’s basketball program has been really successful. It’s just a plus my brother is playing, too.”

Growing up, Jean mentioned  Alex and Mary got along, but always held a competitive nature against each other.

“We are both very competitive, whether it comes to sports, school or even video games,” Mary said.

Both being guards, the two have similarities in their game. Growing up they would always practice together with their dad.

“Actually, I have gotten a few comments this year after watching us play, that I play exactly like my brother,” Mary said. “I’ve always grown up looking at him because he has always been with my dad working in the gym, so watching him play I guess is me learning from him.”

When playing one-on-one, it’s no easy task because of their similarities.

Alex said Mary has many skills, although he has won almost every time.

“It’s not easy,  she has unbelievable quickness,” Alex said.

Mary laughed and replied, “Someday I’ll win.”

Their competitiveness for the game has brought success in just their first season of Warhawk basketball. Alex has played in 16 games, starting one, while helping the ’Hawks compile a 14-7 record.

Meanwhile, Mary has played in 21 games, starting 19. She averages six points per game, but most importantly, is a contributer to the team’s 16-5 record.

“It’s going really well, I mean we weren’t expected to be a good team this year,” Mary said. “Now, were ranked in the nation and second in conference.”

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    PatFeb 13, 2011 at 4:46 am

    Great article…this doesn’t happen often, to have two siblings that are talented enough to play at UW-Whitewater and then have such a special relationship. Wonderful players and super young people!!

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Founded 1901
Bonded by basketball