Athlete of the Issue: Jade Edwards’ 1000th Point

Eleanor Pontikes Screen Shot 2017-01-05 at 9.43.37 PM My relationship with Jade probably developed sometime last year in Mr. Tempone’s 10th grade english class. Or maybe it was during my short stint on the basketball team during our freshman year or playing soccer with her later during the spring. I even played with her on the travel basketball team Flow, but she probably only knew me as the girl who couldn’t figure out what a layup was, and I knew her as the best lay-upper on the team. Regardless, I have gotten the opportunity to spend a lot of time with Jade and see who she is off the court. Jade is undoubtedly an incredible athlete and player, but she’s also a person with a passion and drive that not all people are capable of. Not to mention, she’s hilarious. Growing up, soccer was a pastime for Jade, an activity that she could do after school. She played in the AYSO league and for Northwind Travel Soccer Club. Basketball wasn’t something she took interest in immediately. It wasn’t until she saw her friends play the game in middle school that she started to play and eventually took an interest in it. She was always athletic, though. In 7th grade, Jade joined Flow Basketball Academy’s first team, the program’s first year in existence. For me, there were some familiar Latin faces, like Lauren Salzman and Kathryn Stender, but Jade knew no one. In the future, I guess my claim to fame will be that I played on this team with Jade, but like I said earlier, Jade’s skill was always on a different level. At least a half a foot taller than most girls, Jade was able to shoot three pointers and layups over everyone’s heads. Not much has changed. Jade scored her 1000th point in her high school career a few weeks ago. Yes, her one thousandth. Of course, her preparations for each game might have helped in this triumph, as Jade tries to stay “fresh” in between games with practices, shooting drills, and by trying to build off every game with new things to focus and improve on. Drawing inspiration from varsity head coach, Mr. Rouse, Jade tries to play by the mantra, “Be better today than you were yesterday.” Again, it’s no surprise that one of Jade’s aspirations is to beat Latin’s all-time scoring record of 1,835 points by alum Nikki Dizon, as well as to win sectionals this year with the team. Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, and Diana Taurasi are some of Jade’s most inspiring and influential role models. She wants to be a mix of all their talents. Jade owes most of her progress to Coach Korie of her AAU league team and her coaches at Latin. She explains, “I feel like they all challenge me to play to my potential and over the years, have really built up my toughness and approach to everything.” In what started off as a way to be with friends, basketball has turned into one of Jade’s loves. She plays because it’s fun and matches her competitiveness, but also, “for the love of the game.” After highschool, Jade wants to play basketball in college. “It’s my number one goal right now.” And in ten years, she still wants to be playing basketball in some way or another. Recently, an ankle injury has pestered Jade, but she’ll never stop playing, “Until I’m the best, or I’m maxed out.”]]>