By Katrina England
Reporter, Hart Co. News-Herald
Upon the retirement of Lady Raiders Basketball Coach John Burd, Assistant Coach Jessica (Baker) Lindsey was named as his successor.
This is my second year on the coaching staff at Hart County,” said Lindsey. “I served as the junior varsity coach last year. In previous years, I coached the 7th/8th grade girls team at LeGrande Elementary.”
Lindsey, herself, is a 2006 graduate of Hart County High School.
“I started playing basketball at a young age in elementary school and continued to play in high school,” recalled Lindsey. “I was fortunate to play on some really good teams during my time at Hart County. I was a member of the last team to win the region and advance to state. After high school, I played for four years at Union College where my team won two conference championships.”
Lindsey is inheriting a team she helped build, under the leadership of Burd. Last season’s Lady Raiders went 19-12 in the regular season, ending their run in the semi-finals round of the 5th Region Tournament.
“Being a competitor myself, I want the girls to understand what hard work entails and that if you want something you must work hard in order to achieve it,” said Lindsey. “I have high expectations for our team this year and have full confidence in them to be successful. We are going to work hard, play with passion, and be more aggressive on the court.”
Though she’s no stranger to her players and their families, a Meet & Greet was held on Thursday, May 11 in the auditorium at the high school. Her assistant coaches, Whitney Choate and Angela Craddock were also in attendance.
“My core values as a coach are built around teamwork, integrity, attitude, and perseverance,” added Lindsey. “I believe in working hard and never giving up. We will work together as a team, be respectful to others, and push through adversity. My hope is that these values carry off the court and teach them lessons that go beyond the game of basketball.”
Lindsey says she is looking forward to a successful and rewarding season, and she is excited about the future of Lady Raider Basketball.