Team chemistry is an essential part of sports. But a pair of guards on the Salt Lake Community College women’s basketball team have a bond that can’t be duplicated.
Monique and Dominique Mills have been playing sports together since they were children, so they already have the chemistry that any college coach is looking for. Moreover, the siblings have a unique connection on the court that simply can’t be taught. That’s because the sisters are also twins.
“I always know where [Dominique] is at on the court when we do play together … it comes naturally,” Monique Mills says.
Not only is their chemistry to the point that they don’t need to speak to each other, but all it takes for them is their body language. This gives them an advantage not only on offense, but on defense as well.
“I can tell the way her body is from the back, what she is thinking,” Monique adds. “We just know.”
Putting them at the top of a 2-3 zone, they can terrorize an offense. Offensively, they can pick apart any defense. Snow College experienced this firsthand Jan. 23 in Bruin Arena.
In a quick transition of plays, the Mills sisters had two steals and four points in less than 15 seconds. Snow College wasn’t the first team to experience their teamwork. They have been making their presence known their whole life.
Their father, SLCC men’s basketball assistant Silas Mills, noticed they had a special talent for basketball early on when he was playing professionally overseas.
“Over in France one of my coaches had two sons,” Silas says. “They weren’t twins, same age as the girls. And the girls used to kick their butt! All the time! And it was like … Wow! They kept winning!”
They continued to win in a convincing manner. Monique and Dominique, in their senior year at Juan Diego Catholic High School, led their team to an undefeated season and a state championship.
Their knack for winning continued into their college career. SLCC started the season 18-0 before losing to College of Southern Idaho on Jan. 7. The loss ended the twins’ 43-game win streak.
But what may be more impressive than their chemistry together, is their humility after they lost.
“You win some, you lose some,” Dominique says. “You learn from your losses. I learned that we need to become more of a team.”
Salt Lake had risen to No. 1 in the NJCAA rankings before the loss to CSI. Still, both Dominique and Monique knew there was room for improvement for everyone.
“Know your role,” Dominique says.
Clearly everyone made the effort to know her individual role better. After the loss, SLCC came out firing. The Bruins won their next six games by an average of 21.5 points and now sit No. 4 in the latest rankings.
Monique and Dominique will continue to help lead their team to success with their unique chemistry. The chemistry between them on the court is rare. More than that, it’s unexplainable. They’re twins.
“It comes naturally,” Monique says.
To see the Mills twins and this unique chemistry in action, the Bruins play USU-Eastern this Thursday and Colorado Northwestern on Saturday. SLCC students can present their OneCard at the box office for a free ticket.