Jackson College Jets women's basketball team had a great season. They finished 23-4 powered by an 18-game winning streak during which they took down at the time sixth-ranked Schoolcraft College.
Head Coach Heather Brown said that was one of the top moments of the year.
"I knew we could do it. I believed we were a better team all around. The girls prepared really well. I gave them everything they knew was going to come and we prepared for everything they could do. They showed up and they wanted it bad, so we came out with a win," she said.
Brown who recently was named MCCAA Eastern Conference Coach of the Year attributes some of the success by having a roster full of quality players, including Tyra Ford who transferred to Jackson College from IUPUI and Nakiya Sigman who transferred in from Alabama's Southern Union.
"When I sat down and talked to Coach Brown about what she's looking for, she needed a point guard and that was perfect for me," Sigman said. "The team overall is talented, fun and team oriented. We really like to work together."
The season ended in the NJCAA District B semifinal as they came up just short against Grand Rapids Community College.
Coach Brown acknowledges this group was special.
"Fighters. Every one of them," Brown said. "The core group we had knew what it took to win and wanted to win. The returners were hungry to get a little farther than we did last year. At practice you could see them pushing each other."
The work isn't done
Ford, the freshly crowned MCCAA Eastern Conference Freshman of the Year who had a double-double in the finale, said they're hungry for more next season.
"I'm hoping that we can accomplish winning the tournaments from the districts to go on to the Sweet 16 and winning that," she said. "That starts with team bonding and everybody knowing what their roles are."
The program has gone 62-19 over the past three seasons.
"We finally have a successful program which makes it easier to recruit. When you're winning people want to play for you," Brown said. "We have on-campus housing so you can get players from out-of-state like Nakiya and Tyra. I think Jackson College does some things a little different with our Center for Student Success and other programs to help give them the best opportunity to be successful at Jackson College."
Their hard work landed them some hardware as well.
Nakiya (Lima, OH/Lima Senior) received All-Conference Third Team honors. Tyra Ford (Anderson, IN/Anderson) was named to the First Team Eastern Conference All-Freshman, All-Region teams. Michigan Center native Kaycee Shannon was named to the MCCAA First-Team All Eastern Conference, All-Region, All-MCCAA and All-Defensive Team. Jackson High School alum Jada Patton received Second Team All-Conference honors.