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Plant City Observer Friday, Jan. 19, 2018 10 months ago

Athlete of the Week: Kayla Lissy

The Durant sophomore played well against Leto and East Bay last week.
by: Justin Kline Sports/Associate Editor

Though Durant split last week’s action against Leto and East Bay, the games had one thing in common: Kayla Lissy made her presence felt. The Durant sophomore finished with 24 points, 13 rebounds, 13 steals and six assists against Leto and 6 points, 11 rebounds, six assists and five steals against East Bay. Lissy leads the Cougars in steals (3.9 per game) and assists (2.9 per game) this season.

Know someone who deserves an Athlete of the Week feature? Email Justin Kline at [email protected] by the Friday before the next issue.


From your perspective, what’s this season been like?

It’s been kind of a bumpy road because we’ve been having to build up with younger players that don’t really have the basketball IQ that we need to have, including myself. After losing all of our seniors, we had a whole summer of we didn’t know what to expect … it is a rebuilding season.


And this team is really young now.

And I’m still learning the game myself. Me and Kirsten (Grindel), basically all of us, it’s taking us a while to come together as a team and figure out what our strengths and weaknesses are, and trying to figure out how to put it all together into a win … we just have to keep it consistent.


How far has the team come from the beginning of the season to this point?

I don’t know what it was in the beginning, maybe our adrenaline or something, but we just went out there and we played, and we came out with wins. Toward the middle of the season we started going downhill and just kept going. We had to find a way to come out of it. The Plant City game, I know we didn’t win it but … we played really well in that game. We didn’t win but we were all so proud of each other. There was no heads down. It was just a good game.


You’re in a key role for the team now. How far have you come as a player from your freshman year?

I think I’ve come pretty far because last year was kind of my first year playing organized basketball. I would always question myself. Why am I on varsity? I didn’t know what was going on half the time. We had the summer and I feel like that’s when I really improved, I got to build my skills and know the game better.


Where did you improve the most?

I feel like, skill-wise, either shooting or dribbling. But I think a lot of it was confidence. I feel like I built a lot of confidence in myself to be able to improve.


What other sports do you play?

I play softball for the school … and I’m going to do track this year, as well.


What advice would you give to young players getting ready to go up to high school?

Always ask questions. That’s the only way you’re going to learn anything … sometimes, all it takes is a question. That really helped me. I asked a lot of questions last year and (the coaches) kept pushing me to ask questions because that’s the only way you’re ever gonna understand something, is if you ask.

Justin Kline is the Sports/Associate Editor at the Plant City Observer. He has been covering all things sports-related in the Winter Strawberry Capital of the World since 2013.

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