The Northside Lady Bears have a long history of success and this year is no different. Right now they are off to a 17-1 start. Basketball takes a whole team effort, but senior stand-out Aahliyah Jackson has been leading the pack.
Walking into a Northside High School basketball game the seats are filled no matter if the Lady Bears or the Grizzlies are on the court. The fans, friends, and family all have respect for the success that both teams have accomplished and they especially have respect for head coach Rickey Smith, the Lady Bears, and Aahliyah Jackson.
"I think our fans understand girl's basketball," said Rickey Smith on fans respect for Aahliyah Jackson. "They understand how big of a roll she plays in our basketball game and it's kind of like watching Malik Monk, they just like watching a great player play."
Northside High School has a deep history of success in their girl's basketball program and at the center of their success in recent years is senior Aahliyah Jackson.
"Aahliyah has been a great player for two-years and we have just lost three basketball games in two-years with her being here," said Smith. "She's such a good kid, works hard every day and is a student of the game. She studies film, studies tape, and is always in the gym working out."
Jackson has been a team leader across the board for the Lady Bears this season averaging 18-points and 9-rebounds per game. Making it easy to see why she has picked up many accolades like a nomination for the McDonald's All-American and a scholarship to play for Texas A&M.
"I feel with great honor that I am leaving a legacy here," said Aahliyah Jackson on graduating soon. "And that I can probably succeed at the next level and honestly just to get the chance to play at the next level at college and with the SEC being one of the biggest leagues around, I'm pretty excited and blessed to have this opportunity."
The next step in life for Aahliyah Jackson is playing for Texas A&M, and even at a young age Aahliyah knows that she wants basketball to be a part of her life even after college.
"I would love to play at the WNBA level or overseas maybe," said Jackson confidently. "But I do want to be a physical therapist, just to kind of stick around the game a little bit and do that."
The Northside Lady Bears have a neutral conference game vs. Rogers Heritage on Friday January 15th. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m. in Rogers, Arkansas.