‘Cavalierettes’ move on to college
Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 7, 2003
During Whitney Lassiter’s sophomore year at Lakeland High School, she did what every underclassman basketball player dreams of doing – the Lady Cavalier made it to the varsity team.
However, her debut year as a court-star went about as badly as a season could; Lakeland finished at 0-14 in the district.
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But Lassiter wasn’t discouraged. &uot;My teammates and I played during the summer, and we did pretty good,&uot; she said. &uot;We were training pretty good, and looking forward to next season.&uot;
Their work paid off; Lakeland took home six victories in 2001-2, including two victories over local rival Nansemond River and a win against Great Bridge in which Lakeland erased a 17-point second-quarter deficit.
Still, Lassiter and her squad weren’t satisfied. They did even better this past year, ending up with eight wins, the last of which was Lassiter’s first-ever defeat of Deep Creek.
It was one contest in 2002-3 against Hickory that made a huge difference for Lassiter’s future, said coach Stephanie Odom. &uot;She was everywhere in that game,&uot; said Odom. &uot;She was cutting to the basket, shooting inside and outside, posting up, doing everything.&uot;
Odom sent footage of the game to the Apprentice trade school in Newport News. Earlier this week, Lassiter signed to play the court sport for the school.
&uot;I met with the coaches, and they were both really cool,&uot; said Lassiter, who maintained a 2.8 grade point average during her high school years. &uot;I’m going to be playing against bigger girls with more experience, so I’m going to have to work really hard.&uot;
Erin Bradley, a member of the Lakeland field hockey team that tied for the district title in 2000-1 and won both the regular season and district tournament title in 2001-2 and 2002-3, received an academic scholarship to Lynchburg College. Bradley made the All-District team in her senior season, and plans to continue her career in college.
&uot;I felt really comfortable with the coaches at Lynchburg,&uot; said Bradley, who received the school’s Female Athlete of the Year award at the Spring Sports Banquet on Wednesday night. &uot;I’m going to major in elementary education, because I’m really good with kids.&uot; Over the past few years, Bradley coached younger players during Lakeland field hockey coach Tara McClenney’s youth league camps, as well as the Suffolk Youth Athletic Association.