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WP junior high girls play for Big 6 title

January 20, 2012

West Point could have it's first trophy of the season on the basketball court come Saturday.

The junior high girls basketball team, under the direction of six year head coach Beverly Jackson, will tipoff for the Big Six Conference championship against Starkville in Starkville. Start time is scheduled for noon. It will be the first time in recent memory the girls have chance to play for the title, and it's the first for coach Jackson.

"I wasn't aware of the accomplishment," she said. "But i'm very excited to get a chance to play for it."

At 13-1, the Green Wave have steamrolled through the season to get to this point. They play in arguably one of the toughest districts at any level with Starkville, Tupelo, Columbus, Aberdeen and Noxubee producing a host of talent in virtually every sport. West Point has their share of talent. So what's the secret?

"I have a lot of athletic girls and they play hard," Jackson said. "And we have a lot of prayer." Jackson added it's important to start playing at an early age because its there where they are able to get the fundamentals of the game before learning more advanced skills at the junior level to get them more prepared for the high school level.

Jackson, who played her high school ball at Starkville High School, moved to West Point from Louisville and quickly started coaching the 7th and 8th grade girls basketball teams.

"I enjoy the kids and the excitement they get from playing," she said. "I like to see how happy they get when they win a game and just see the motivation they get from playing."

Jackson, who played briefly at Mississippi Valley State University, decided that she wanted to coach after 15-years of playing experience.

She said some of her biggest influences were her father and sister, who she calls her biggest cheerleader. She says she learned several lifetime skills along the way.

"Dedication and heart," she said. "That's what my high school coach preached and that's what she instilled in me. The most important thing is you have to have heart to play this game and you have to be dedicated."

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