WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — From hoops to hope. A Winston-Salem high school basketball team is pushing through adversity to find their place on the court.
For the basketball players at Carver High School the sport is more than just a game.
“It means everything to me. It’s what changed my life really. Ever since I played my first game, I loved it,” said Lovell Johnson, a junior basketball player.
Each of their stories are different, but there’s one thing they all have in common.
“Ball is life definitely,” head JV coach Michaiah Hinds said.
Not only a love for the game, but the brotherly bond that comes with it
The sport holds a special place in Drevon Jackson’s heart, saying it keeps him from an alternative lifestyle.
“It’s very important. It takes me away from the streets. It also helps me improve on myself,” Jackson said.
While he dribbles through school and athletics, he also works part time at a fast-food restaurant.
He’s saving up to go to college and become a music engineer.
Johnson has hopes of going to college on a basketball scholarship. He admits the game has stopped him from falling into the wrong crowd too.
“Don’t let the negativity consume you. Always let the positive come in,” Johnson said.
It’s advice he’s learned from his coaches.
“Basketball, life, this team, is bigger than you as an individual. Remember that! We (the team) are bigger than just you as an individual,” Hinds told his team.
He and assistant coach Miqyel Rayner pride themselves on speaking to the athletes in a way they can relate to. It’s what Hinds said that makes his communication between them work.
“I’m able to speak life to them. I’m able to encourage them where they may not receive encouragement on a daily basis. I’m able to speak life and redirect some negative thoughts and negativity in their mind.”
For Hinds and Rayner, their hope is for these students to be more than just athletes.
“If I can encourage them to give back when they grow older, we can continue to save our kids; we can continue to create positivity not only in our world but in our community,” Hinds said.
The JV Carver High School basketball team is looking to win its first game of the season Tuesday afternoon.