Passion Hunter-Edwards brings heart and fire to a Lady Indians team already on the upswing
If you’ve been in the stands during a Lady Indians basketball game this season, you know one thing for certain-our girls are making one heck of a comeback.
What’s more, if you’ve been following the team’s progress since Christmas, you also know that they have received an incredible shot of adrenaline courtesy of Passion Hunter-Edwards.
Edwards, a junior guard, has come back to high school basketball on fire after sitting out her last three semesters-two at Wright City and one here at Elsberry.
“When I got to Elsberry I wanted to work harder since I hadn’t played those other semesters,” said Edwards. “It just made me want to try harder.”
To help keep her skills sharp during her hiatus, Edwards worked out, attended open gym as often as possible, played basketball with her brothers and was trained by former overseas player Bobby Wallace, the same trainer that has been working with Indians big man Kenny Lesley.
Since returning to the game, Edwards has seen action as both a junior varsity and varsity player.
“We’re trying to play her on junior varsity as much as possible because she missed the first semester here and didn’t get to play the last year at Wright City,” said assistant coach Errol Spratt. “She needs that playing time.”
That junior varsity playing time has been a significant adjustment, but it’s something that Edwards is grateful for.
“It’s way different,” said Edwards. “At Wright City, I started on varsity as a freshman. I know that since I didn’t play those other semesters, it had an effect on how I’m playing now. Playing more junior varsity has made things really easy. It’s better that way. I can get everything back to normal and get things back to the way they used to be.”
Spratt and head coach Hector Bencomo, however, aren’t hung up on whether Edwards plays junior varsity, varsity or both this year.
“The big thing is giving her as much playing time as we can so that she’s more comfortable,” said Spratt. “She was timid for a while, but you can tell in the last few games-especially our last one-that she’s getting more comfortable.”
It’s one thing for Edwards to get comfortable playing with her new team, but how have her new teammates responded to her?
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