GREAT FALLS – The University of Providence women's basketball had a surprise addition to their Tuesday schedule.
Argo legend Kim Ramorini (then Kim Freeman) visited the Argos team before a film session Tuesday morning, addressing the team about lessons she learned from her playing days, and answering questions from the team regarding how athletics helped shape her as a person.
"I talked to several of the girls afterwards and they thought it was amazing," head coach Bill Himmelberg said. "Seeing someone as accomplished as she was after she was here means a lot to the girls. It gives them a perspective about making the most of the time while they are here. That was a big thing for the girls."
Ramorini played for the Argos from 2001 to 2005. Before coming to the then-named University of Great Falls, the Augusta-native attended Montana State University before deciding she wanted to pursue a basketball career.
Ramorini went on to have a decorative career as an Argo. A three-year starter, she received several All-Conference awards, was the 1st Argo basketball player to be named the National Player of the Week, and broke the scoring record while playing. She averaged 17.1 points per game, good for 2nd in Argo history. She scored 589 points in a season, which is the 2nd most an Argo has ever received. Her 2,750 points are currently 3rd all time.
Despite her scoring accolades, Himmelberg remembers her as an all-around player. She totaled 161 career assists and 37 blocks, and Himmelberg said she led her team in all statistical categories her junior and senior seasons.
"It's a huge honor to be received like this," Ramorini said. "I didn't expect this much of a warm welcome. It's amazing. It's nice to not be forgotten. I live somewhere where people don't know my past as a basketball player, so to come back and feel that I'm still welcome here, it's an honor and it really warms my heart."
Ramorini spoke to the team about the life lessons she learned as a student-athlete in Great Falls. Several of the lessons, including the importance and reward of hard work, have aided her in her life off the court.
"You look back and it doesn't feel like 15 years ago," Ramorini said. "For me, UGF was a great school and a great experience. Just playing was what I wanted to do and on top of that I got a great education. I had fun. I learned what it meant to work hard and then be rewarded for that. It taught me things for later. You don't want to diminish the right now because when I was here that "right now" was the greatest time of my life. Things change and evolve. It really does prepare you for everything that will come your way."
Himmelberg was ecstatic about the opportunity for the team to meet Ramorini.
"Our program really wants to emphasize the importance of former players," he said. "We want them to come back and feel welcome. We have a respect for the history of our program and the history of our school. We love when former players come back and visit and we get to hear their success stories. We want our program to be about just more when the kids are here. Whether I was their coach or not, we want former players to come back. We just believe it's important."