Kayla White was honored for becoming a member of Montgomery Academy’s 1,000-point club on Saturday. Included in the ceremony were parents Penny and Mark White, brother Keefe and girls basketball coach Barry Fencher. (Staff Photo)
By Tim Gayle
(January 23, 2017)
Montgomery Academy senior Kayla White was honored on Saturday as a member of the school’s 1,000-point club, passing the milestone in a 52-25 win over Prattville Christian a week earlier.
“It was really my coach that was pushing me so hard because I didn’t realize I was close until he told me,” she said. “Him pushing me so hard made me accomplish this and it’s just amazing to get this award. The award should go to all of my teammates and coach, but it’s an amazing feeling.”
Kayla was honored in a postgame ceremony along with her parents Mark and Penny, the volleyball coach at Alabama State University, and twin brother Keefe, a tailback for the Eagles’ football team.
The award might have had a little extra meaning after White signed a letter of intent to play volleyball collegiately at Metropolitan State University in November and began having second thoughts about playing basketball her senior year.
“There was a huge part of me that did not want to play basketball at all,” she said. “Most of it was because I’m already small as it is and I wanted to focus on volleyball. But I just couldn’t leave my teammates. They’re my family and I owe it to them to finish. They’ve made me the athlete I am.”
Former Montgomery Academy players that reached the 1,000-point mark in their careers includes Joi Anderson (2000), Amelia McCall (2007), Layne Doctson (2012), Miah Brooks (2012) and teammate Jade Brooks, who was honored in a similar ceremony earlier this year.
“Kayla is my energy player,” Montgomery Academy coach Barry Fencher said. “She really is the motor of this team. She goes 110 percent in practice and it just rolls over to the game. We started out slow today and she picked it up.”
Montgomery Academy improved to 19-3 overall and 5-0 in Class 3A Area 5 play with a 56-35 win over Southside-Selma in which Brooks scored 20 and White 16. MA can capture the area title with a win Tuesday at Montevallo and has five more regular-season games before playing in the area tournament.
Under the guidance of Brooks and White, the Eagles have reached the state tournament in each of the last three seasons, losing in 2014 and 2015 in the semifinals and last year in the championship game.
“I think we still have a lot of work to do, but that is the goal,” White said. “I don’t want to get too far ahead. We still have a lot of work to do.”