Falcon has quick hands and mind

Basketball: Foothills captain plans to play with RDC Queens next fall

By: Bruce Campbell

  |  Posted: Wednesday, Feb 05, 2014 06:00 am

Foothills Falcon Kennedy Burgess goes up for a left-handed shot against the St. Francis Browns earlier this year. Burgess plans to play for the Red Deer College Queens next fall.
Foothills Falcon Kennedy Burgess goes up for a left-handed shot against the St. Francis Browns earlier this year. Burgess plans to play for the Red Deer College Queens next fall.
Wheel file photo

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A Foothills Falcon has left some opponents on the hard court not knowing their left from right.

Foothills point guard Kennedy Burgess’ ambidexterity has crossed many opponent up on the court, said Foothills Senior girls basketball head coach Lana Gwilliam.

“She can handle the ball, she can shoot, she can penetrate down to the hoop, she dishes — she just sees the ball really well,” Gwilliam said. “Her biggest thing is she uses her left hand really well — some teams actually think she is left handed.

“She is so good with her left, that if people force her to the left, she can just get by it.”

Burgess doesn’t know how she ended up with one hand as good as the other, but she’s glad she’s got it.

“I’m right-hand dominate, but I love my left hand and I am not afraid to use it — I’ll go to my left more than I will go to my right,” she said with a chuckle. “I’m also not afraid to pull up and take a shot with my left hand.”

However, her strength isn’t in her hands, it’s in her head.

“She is just smart — she reads, knows when to drive, when to pass,” Gwilliam said. “She is one of those players who gives everything she has every time she is on the court.

“She wants to do better every time she is on the floor.”

Burgess’ hard work on the backcourt and in the classroom has landed the Grade 12 student a partial scholarship at Red Deer College, where she will study the back.

“Red Deer has a pre-chiropractic program which I am really interested in because I want to be a chiropractor,” she said. “They can pay for three of my classes, but I might be able to get an academic scholarship for another class.

“So, I will be talking to Mr. Mac (Foothills guidance counsellor Jeff McIntyre) for some help. He’s awesome.”

She had a 90 per cent average going into the final exam break in January.

Burgess got her hoops bug during her younger days in Saskatchewan, where she watched two of her aunts play basketball for the University of Regina Cougars.

She moved to Okotoks approximately six years ago and after a successful stint with the Okotoks Junior High School, she was hoping to make the Falcons’ senior varsity team.

It wasn’t meant to be.

“We knew she was a good player back in Grade 10,” Gwilliam said. “But we had a lot of good guards back then, Noelle (Reboul), Amy (Wooldridge) and Angie (Minue) so she played JV.

“I watched a few of the JV games back then and she really helped that team out.”

That JV team won zones and the league title — with many of those girls now playing their final year of high school with the Senior varsity team.

“I love this group of girls, I have been playing with most of them since I was in Grade 7,” said Burgess, who is a co-captain with the Falcons along with Kalli Turbach.

“They work hard and I love feeding off of their energy.”

Schedule break

The Falcons won’t be on the court for Foothills Athletic Council action until Feb. 12 when they travel to Black Diamond to take on the Oilfields Drillers. The Falcons are in first-place in the league with a 4-0 record.

bcampbell@okotoks.greatwest.ca


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