Sitting along the baseline of a Pontotoc girls game two seasons ago, Kayla Russell’s grandfather beamed as he talked about his granddaughter.
He said she lived in that gym, “a gym rat.”
Her father, Bill Russell, has had an opportunity to reach success levels with his daughter that most basketball coaches and playing kids only dream about.
“It’s tough,” Bill Russell said after the loss against Gentry, Kayla’s last game. “I’ve enjoyed coaching her.”
The game-winning 3-pointer she made against Forrest County in the 2012 Class 4A championship game somehow banked near the top corner of the glass. Shooters find ways to make shots, none bigger than that. And no trophy is bigger than the one that Pontotoc clutched just minutes after that shot that shook Mississippi Coliseum.
Not many get to do either one of those things. Even fewer get to do so with their father.