By: Hunter Ferguson
Plainview High School senior basketball player Emilee Hedger spends time as the teams point guard and shooting guard. Saying “Basketball has always been a passion of mine. The thrill of the game, the teamwork, and the challenge of pushing myself to improve motivates me to give it my all on the court. The feeling of sinking a perfect shot or making a great play is just unbeatable”. She said “Being successful not only means winning championships, but it’s more about personal growth, improvement, and being a valuable team player. For me, working hard, setting goals, finding joy regardless of the outcome, and having dedication are many of the reasons I am successful”.
When asked about where she draws her inspiration from, Hedger stated “It’s hard to narrow it down but players like Caitlyn Clark, Sue Bird, Michael Jordan, and Stephen Curry are all around good players and good people. They have not only achieved great success on the court, but have also shown leadership, dedication, and a love for the game. They serve as a constant reminder of what is possible with hard work,determination, and a passion for basketball”. However, she also said “In practice, I enjoy working against Jacey Hammon the most. We have been playing basketball together since we were in elementary school. I feel that we compliment each other and push each other to the highest level”.
The Plainview team focuses on “supporting and encouraging each other to improve and work together as a team. Basketball is all about unity and having fun on the court”. When that mindset pays off and miracles happen it makes everything worth it. Hedger was with her team during one of these moments recalling “It’s not often you hit a buzzer beating 3 pointer, two years in a row against the same team. The first year it was called off, the second year it counted and sent us into overtime”. She went on to say “there are many opponents that I enjoy competing against, and beating, but it’s all in good sportsmanship and respect for the game”.
Sportsmanship is key, in Hedger’s book, to being a good leader which “means embodying the values and principles that your school and community hold dear both on and off the court. It’s about displaying good sportsmanship, respect, and integrity. When you represent your school and community, you are not just playing for yourself, but also for the pride and honor of those who support you. It’s a responsibility that comes with the privilege of being a part of something bigger than yourself”.