Ocoee High junior and girls basketball power forward Jahnecia Charles maintains a 4.0 GPA while putting up impressive numbers on the court.
It’s still early in the season, but Ocoee High junior Jahnecia Charles is putting up some impressive numbers for the girls basketball team. Per game, the power forward is averaging 7.5, 8.2 rebounds and 3.2 steals. She’s a star in academics, too, maintaining a 4.0 GPA.
How did you get started playing basketball?
When I was 9, my parents couldn’t pick me up after school for summer camp, so they signed me up for a basketball program, the Junior Magic. My family loves basketball, and they support me 100% and everything I do.
What do you love about basketball?
I guess the rush I get, because even though there’s a lot of people in the crowd, I don’t see or hear them. It’s just me, myself, the ball and the goal.
How do you juggle schoolwork with being on the team?
I just keep saying, “I will, I must, I shall” every day, and that’s how I get through.
Is there a game so far this season that has been a highlight for you?
It would probably be Tuesday, Dec. 11 — my mom’s birthday — because we played against Jones, and she said, “Don’t go all out,” but I did, just for her.
Tell us about the dynamics of your team this season.
This year, we have a lot of freshmen, so we get to know each other and learn their different strengths and weaknesses. We encourage each other on and off court, and we bond over food. We go to Subway to eat and just bond there, laugh and joke around.
Who is your biggest inspiration and why?
I’d probably say my mom, because she’s one of the hardest-working women I’ve ever met in my life. As a single parent, she just found ways to do anything and everything and make me feel like I’m more than average.
Which of your teammates is the funniest?
Probably Jakayla Jackson. She’s the funniest, because she’s just a whole character — she sings, acts, dances and she’s amazing. She’s hilarious.
What would you say are some of your strengths and weaknesses?
Most people say my strength is that I’m coachable. My weakness is that I tend to be fearful of things at times.
Do you have a favorite Christmas song?
“This Christmas” by Chris Brown. I just love his voice.
What are your hobbies outside of basketball?
I like to just watch a bunch of informal videos. My favorite TV show is “Adam Ruins Everything,” because I learn something new every time I watch it.