Former track star Dominique Maloy a rookie sensation for the Las Vegas Sin

As the Las Vegas Sin look to climb into the championship picture, a key part of the club’s rebuilding effort involves a significant improvement in the running game. Having established herself as a track and field champion with Arizona State University, rookie running back Dominique Maloy is a welcome presence for the red and gold. To observe the muscular development of her powerful legs, one can tell that Maloy, the co-founder of a training firm called wONdnEss, is built for speed.

Having grown up in Pahrump, Nevada, she not only was the captain of the track team, but she excelled on the hardcourt, serving as the captain of the basketball team in both her junior and senior years. Such athletic versatility was also complemented by a stint on the soccer team.

As a 15-time state champion in high school, she set state records in the 100m, 200m and 400m events, earning a nod as the 3A Nevada Track & Field Athlete of the Year. Taking into account how the NFL has seen track stars such as Willie Gault, James Jett and Renaldo Nehemiah make the transition to pro football; it was only a question of time before the same would happen in the female game.

In her first three seasons of participating in track with Arizona State, she was a six-time All-American, while accumulating some of the fastest times in the school’s history. Having run both indoors and outdoors, some of her personal best times at the outdoor level included 11.39 seconds in the 100m, 23.28 seconds in the 200m and a time of 52.69 in the 400m.

Not only has she competed in the 100m and 200m dashes at the NCAA Championships, she has earned bronze and silver medals at the 4x400m relay run; she also earned an Academic All-Pac-10 Honorable Mention selection. With ambitions for the 2016 US Olympic Trials, Maloy has also participated in boxing while considering other athletic challenges including Cross Fit and Mixed Martial Arts.

Despite a loss in her Sin debut, Maloy made a strong impression. Competing against the Los Angeles Temptation at the world renowned Memorial Coliseum, she racked up 67 yards on just 10 carries, while scoring one touchdown. Although a shoulder injury sidelined her for the second half, she sent a powerful message that opposing defenses will need to learn to prepare much better in order to contain her.

During that debut game, Maloy’s performance was complemented by another promising rookie. Lining up at wide receiver, Charlotte Abrahamsen provided a jolt on offense with 42 receiving yards on five receptions. One of the league’s taller players, Abrahamsen’s season was abruptly shortened when she suffered a tear in her ACL and MCL during the game.

Although there was a tinge of irony that she also suffered an injury in her debut, one area of consolation is that other young stars in the league have suffered injuries during their inaugural seasons. Of note, Alli Alberts suffered a horrible concussion (also against Los Angeles) but she managed to become a two-time league champion. Like Maloy, her efforts provide hope for a determined Sin franchise.

Of note, the Sin’s home opener at the Citizens Business Bank Arena demonstrated Maloy’s potential for greatness. Although the Seattle Mist held on to win the game, Maloy was the offensive catalyst that nearly orchestrated a comeback. Not only did she log the first 100-yard performance of her career, she also broke through a punishing Mist defense with three touchdowns.

The chance to suit up for the Sin not only represents a special athletic homecoming for Maloy, it is also a great opportunity for Nevada sports fans to once again appreciate her greatness. Her presence energizes a Sin franchise that has been fortunate to have a rookie sensation on their roster for the second consecutive season. Last season, the club found a new signal caller in Sindy Cummings, who quickly emerged as a fan favorite. Should Maloy manage to build on her sterling performances, the honor of Rookie of the Year could be bestowed upon her by season’s end.