Face of the game – Jessica Emerson

The squeaking of basketball shoes against a wooden floor and the bounces of the ball echo throughout the gym. The roar of the crowd fades into the background as she prepares for what could be her final times playing the sport she has come to love.

Senior Jessica Emerson has played basketball for the Lady Tigers her entire high school career and has been on varsity as a shooting guard for the past two. She started playing basketball at the age of four for the Little Dribblers Club in Brownsboro, Texas.

“We are playing a tournament in Brownsboro this year, and this may be my last year playing basketball,” Emerson said. “It feels like I’m coming full circle because that was where I started.”

Throughout her years, Emerson has played many sports including softball and volleyball. However, basketball has been her passion and is the one she finally decided to commit to.

“Basketball stuck with me because you’re running the whole time, and you’re constantly moving,” Emerson said. “The competitive level and the physical aspect appeal to me because you can get rough in basketball.”

Emerson strives to set a good example for her teammates, so balancing her academics with her sports is something she has come to master.

“I do my best to keep up, so I have a little flashlight, and I do my homework on the bus,” Emerson said. “I try to encourage the other girls to do the same because keeping up is hard.”

Playing basketball has not only strengthened Emerson physically, but has strengthened the relationship between her and her father.

“My dad is a very sports-minded person, so it gives us something to talk about,” Emerson said. “This year, he has come to all of my games, but in the past, when he lived in Arizona, he couldn’t come. He would listen on the radio, and we would call each other after each game and talk [about] what I did wrong and how I can improve.”

In addition to Emerson’s relationships with other people, playing basketball has boosted her self-confidence.

“It’s definitely given me more confidence because playing a sport gives you a mental work ethic like I can do something,” Emerson said. “It’s what gives you a good attitude and discipline.”