Individually, her numbers stand out.
Averaging 14.3 points on 40-percent shooting, in addition to 9.1 rebounds, while anchoring the middle for the 11-5 Central Lakes College Raiders women's basketball team are more than modest accomplishments.
Added to recent games of 23 points and 17 rebounds and 22 points and 20 rebounds the results could justifiably allow Becky Skiba to take credit for her individual and team's success.
Skiba is the first to shy away from individual accolades. Instead, she chooses to credit the close relationship she shares with teammates and the efforts of the Raiders' coaching staff in relation to her success.
"It makes me so happy thinking of how our team is playing now," Skiba said. "We are all so close and there for each other, to pick each other up even if we do the worst thing possible on the court. Someone is always there saying 'Who cares' and picking the other person up."
Becky Skiba of the Central Lakes College Raiders attempted a shot against Northland on Wednesday. Brainerd Dispatch/ Kelly Humphrey
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"I think that starts with the confidence that (CLC head coach Dennis) Eastman and his wife (Pam) and daughter (Megan) have given us to just go out and play and be the best we can, which has been awesome."
Despite her reluctance to compliment her individual success Skiba is unquestionably the Raiders' leader, which has been earned the last two seasons as she and fellow sophomores have passed through an early coaching change last year, followed by Eastman's hiring, and a late-season surge that resulted in a surprise trip to the NJCAA national tournament.
"When I first I came to Central Lakes it was really weird and nothing like I thought it was going to be," Skiba said. "To be honest there were a lot of people, including me, who were down and not wanting to play anymore.
"When Eastman came in we started to feel like a basketball team again. We all became close and learned that we could count on each other and count on him being there for us."
What Skiba and fellow sophomores have forged from adversity is a bond of teamwork and determination that has led to on-the-court success and perhaps, more importantly, friendships that will last a lifetime.
"(The sophomores) are close," Eastman said. "This team is something these girls will have the rest of their lives. Down the road they will get together and they will have that bond that teams have when you get that close.
"One thing these girls have done that I was a little worried about in the beginning of the season is let the freshmen in as well. I never said anything about it to them but as a team they understand they needed these freshmen to have the success they wanted.
"I think this group of girls has moved on from the past and has built that trust that you need to have to have a successful team. It comes down to them trusting themselves and trusting the coach."
The bond of trust that has formed between players has, in Skiba's words, turned a team of individuals from throughout central Minnesota into a family.
"Our relationship off the court might not always be the most positive," Skiba laughed. "Since we are almost like sisters we go back and forth sometimes but when it comes to the court we put that behind us and are there for each other all the time, picking each other up mentally. And, since we're so close we know how to build each other up before and during games."
In addition to the team's closeness if the Raiders hope to repeat last season's national tournament appearance, in addition to possibly capturing a state title, they will have to rely on Skiba's leadership and inside play to pave the way.
"All along Becky has been a good basketball player," Eastman said. "She has always been kind of the voice for the team and has stepped up her game to match. She knows that she's a leader and she knows the team relies on her and she has accepted that.
"She has stepped up to the plate and is doing the things she needs to do to make us a complete team and that is where the wins come from, when you are a complete team. Becky has matured into accepting her role as a leader on this team and she has improved all the aspects of her game."
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