Lady Flames basketball player overcomes obstacles to start
Haris Price is defying the odds by starting at point guard as a true freshman for the 2015-2016 Lady Flames basketball team.
Before the season started, Price said she knew she was one of the few point guards who was going to be on the team in this season, but she did not know she was going to be starting.
'My goal was just to do the best that I could,' Price said. 'My goal wasn't to start: it was just to help the team out as much as I could.'
It's a big jump in competition from high school to the NCAA. According to the NCAA Website, only 3.8 percent of the girls who play high school basketball ever make it to the NCAA.
Lady Flames Head Coach Marty Rowe said people who think that being able to start as a freshman is easy do not understand what all it takes mentally and physically.
'We've asked a freshman point guard, in a really tough league, to play 30 plus minutes a game and take a beating,' Rowe said. 'She's been thrown to the wolves ' She's had to learn on the fly and it's been tough. But she's handled it really well.'
Price has started throughout the season despite battling shin splints that at times have forced her to wear a medical boot off the court in order to prevent stress fractures.
During the team's week off at Christmas, Price's shin splints went completely away. Unfortunately, the joy of playing injury free was short lived when Price's shin splints returned quickly after play resumed.
'Practices are probably the worst,' Price said. 'Once the game starts I get so much adrenaline that my pain tolerance goes up, so it's not so bad.'
As the point guard, Price is the primary ball handler and is expected to run the offense by facilitating and setting the offensive tone.
Rowe said Price often dictates the pace for the rest of the team.
'When she's aggressive, we play aggressive,' Rowe said.
Price said the upperclassmen have helped her deal with overcoming any in-game mistakes she has made.
Kayla Beavers, senior forward for the Lady Flames, said it is rare for a freshman to be able to come in and transition to the unique style the Lady Flames play.
Beavers does not put any limits on how good Price can be now or in the future.
'She's done a fantastic job of catching on and learning her role,' Beavers said. 'She's a great player. If she continues like this, she is going to be the greatest point guard to ever come through Lee.'