Her coach likens her to a duck.

"Because you can never see what's going on in her mind," said Mountain View coach Dave Houle of Mallary Gillespie. "You know how ducks always look so calm, but underneath the water they're working furiously. That's the way she is. I just like what she's all about."

This year's Deseret Morning News Ms. Basketball and the future BYU Cougar is so well-liked by opposing teams and coaches, it's hard to believe she is also the focal point of their preparation.

"The girl can do just about anything," he said. "But if you talk to her, you'd think she couldn't do anything. She's like Cool Hand Luke. The situation changes, but you can't see what's going on in her mind."

She finishes her high school career barely tasting defeat. Her record against Utah schools is a perfect 87-0, which includes four state titles. As a sophomore she helped her team win a national championship, and this season the Bruins are ranked sixth in the nation. She recently earned honorable mention honors as a McDonald's All-American and was invited to the Nike All-American camp last summer, where she wowed coaches from all over the nation.

The most impressive part of Gillespie's game, however, isn't her stats.

"Mallary has been a dream come true," Houle said. "She could have huge individual numbers, but she's unselfish. She does whatever we need her to do to win, and she makes everyone around her look better. Whenever the game's on the line, however, she steps it up."

She wasn't the Bruins' leading scorer any of the four years she started, but not because she couldn't be.

"She just did whatever we needed to win," Houle said. In one game she had a double-double, but not in points. She finished with nine points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists — in three quarters of play.

She averaged 12.8 points, 10.1 rebounds, 6.1 steals and 7.8 assists per game this season.

"She has all the credentials," Houle said. "She has an incredible ability to see the floor as a game unfolds before her. She can be coming down the floor, looking to score and then see a player moving away from the ball and make a great pass. She plays great defense, and boxes out really well. She just has floor sense. She knows where the ball is going, and she's faced some of the best guards in the country."

This year Gillespie ran the team's offense and led their defense.

"At first we weren't playing well, we weren't together," Houle said. "I said sometimes it was like trying to nail jello to a tree. And in the end I think it was Mallary that brought the team together."

Her mom said she's been just as pleasant as a daughter.

"She's really happy," said Laura Gillespie. "She works really hard and she's always active."

Her parents never suspected she'd be as good as she is at not one, but two sports. The starting shortstop for Mountain View's softball team, Gillespie has been an all-state selection in both sports every year of high school.

"It just seems normal," Laura Gillespie said about her daughter's success. "She's so laid-back, but she's very competitive."

The third of six children, she is also an honor student who loves a good book and fly-fishing.

Her mom probably summed it up best, "She's just Mallary."

Mallary Gillespie

Mtn. View, Sr., G

Gillespie averaged 12.8 points, 10.1 rebounds, 6.1 steals and 7.8 assists per game. She holds the state record for 3-point shots made in a game with 10, and accomplished that twice.


E-mail: adonaldson@desnews.com