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  • Writer's pictureEli Hardegree

Basketball Seniors Reflect on Their Careers Leading Up to Final Home Game

The boys and girls basketball teams will be honoring their seniors during their final home games of the season this Saturday against the Kendrick Cherokees.

As the seniors prepare for their final game at Columbus High, some took the time to answer questions and reflect

Why do you play basketball?

#20 Mya Thompson (PG): I've been playing since 4th grade. It's a family sport and I love it.

#2 Justice Walton (G): Honestly, I play because I was asked by a former player to help fill the roster, but after my first year, I enjoyed it and kept playing.

#1 Charles Stone (G): I've loved it my whole life, and it helps me remain sane in life.

#11 Gideon Amissah (SF): I play because I love the game. It's created so many opportunities for me and my family, and I couldn't be more grateful.

#4 Cordell Jordan (SG): I play basketball because it's fun and I enjoy it, and also it may help pay for college.

#23 Jonathan "JP" Powell (SF, F): Basketball has been a sport I enjoyed playing since I was 14. I decided to play the game because I watched a lot of LeBron [James] highlights and I admire the way he plays. Watching him play showed me how to be confident and be a leader, which carries on to my play on the court and off the court.

#0 Mateo Jimenez (G): I fell in love with the game, and I can't stop playing.

What is your favorite memory from playing basketball for CHS?

#20 Mya Thompson (PG): Most definitely when we won our second game. We beat LaGrange. The chemistry and feeling of winning it with those girls was just amazing.

#2 Justice Walton (G): My favorite memory is the bus rides after games before COVID because even though we were packed in with the boys and cheerleaders, we all joked around and had fun.

#1 Charles Stone (G): Beating the #6 team in the state my sophomore year.

#11 Gideon Amissah (SF): My favorite memory would have to be the Golden Corral incident in Cairo. If you know, you know.

#4 Cordell Jordan (SG): My favorite memory is from my freshman year when I made somebody fall off a crossover, and I didn't come close to hitting the shot.

#0 Mateo Jimenez (G): Our first win against Greenville our sophomore year after an 0-23 season

What is the biggest lesson you have learned?

#20 Mya Thompson (PG): Things may not always seem like they're going well, but when you work hard and do the thing you love with the people you love, it's always worth it.

#2 Justice Walton (G): No matter how challenging something is, if you keep working at it, it'll get easier.

#1 Charles Stone (G): Wait your turn and keep working.

#11 Gideon Amissah (SF): I've learned that growth is not always exponential. Your mental game is just as important as - and even more important than - your physical game. Patience and hard work are keys to success.

#4 Cordell Jordan (SG): Biggest lesson I've learned is to never give up and fight no matter what.

#0 Mateo Jimenez (G): It's not all about basketball, you learn a lot of life skills from the game.

What are your plans for the future?

#20 Mya Thompson (PG): I want to go to college to become a project manager while also doing nails and having a clothing brand on the side. If I can, I want to walk on and play basketball in college.

#2 Justice Walton (G): My plans for the future are to go to UAPB (University of Arkansas Pine Bluff) and play softball.

#1 Charles Stone (G): I plan to play basketball at Kennesaw State.

#11 Gideon Amissah (SF): My plan is to live out a lifelong dream and play collegiate basketball at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa.

#4 Cordell Jordan (SG): I plan to join the Air Force.

#0 Mateo Jimenez (G): I'm [planning on] attending Columbus State and majoring in Sports Medicine, and I might walk on for the team.

What legacy are you hoping to leave behind?

#20 Mya Thompson (PG): I hope to just leave behind my loving and hopeful spirit.

#2 Justice Walton (G): I hope to leave the legacy that even if you've never played before, you still have the chance to become a starter.

#1 Charles Stone (G): I want my team to be remembered.

#11 Gideon Amissah (SF): I'm hoping to leave a legacy that leaves a stamp on CHS Hoops. We have so much talent, and it will truly show in the upcoming years.

#4 Cordell Jordan (SG): A legacy I'm hoping to leave behind is to always have heart and never back down.

#0 Mateo Jimenez (G): I'm hoping for people to remember this year and our class of 2022 basketball as a new Columbus High School team, not the regular "losing" team.

What advice do you have for underclassmen?

#20 Mya Thompson (PG): Just keep doing the things that make you happy, and try new things. Also love and push each other.

#2 Justice Walton (G): Play for the seniors so in years to follow, the underclassmen will play for you.

#1 Charles Stone (G): Find something you love, keep your head down, and work at it.

#11 Gideon Amissah (SF): Do not get caught up in the politics or hype of the game. Continue to stay locked in, focused, and run your race.

#4 Cordell Jordan (SG): Enjoy this time while you can because the real world is not a game.

#0 Mateo Jimenez (G): Keep working and pushing yourself in practice and in school because without good grades, you won't play anywhere.

What are you going to miss most about playing basketball for CHS?

#20 Mya Thompson (PG): My teammates for sure, they are family to me now.

#2 Justice Walton (G): I'm definitely going to miss my teammates the most. We've formed a strong bond together.

#1 Charles Stone (G): The brotherhood of the teams that I've been on.

#11 Gideon Amissah (SF): What I'll miss most would have to be playing with my brothers. For the past four years, they have had such a drastic impact on my life. I cannot thank Coach Ivey, Coach McCoy, and Coach Wooten for what they have taught and poured into me.

#4 Cordell Jordan (SG): I'm going to miss the bond that I had with my coaches and the quality time spent with the team.

#0 Mateo Jimenez (G): The brotherly love and how we are all a family, the bonds we make with coaches, the laughs we have at practice, and the joy in the wins that we have. Even the lessons learned from the losses we took. Just being a family as a whole.

The Devils and the Lady Devils basketball teams will take on the Kendrick Cherokees this Saturday. JV plays at 3:30, followed by Girls at 5:00 and Boys at 6:30. Students are encouraged to wear black for the game. Come out and support the Blue Devils!


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