Senior forward Tytiaira Spikes has made a huge impact on the court for Bearden this year, but she has also become a great ambassador for the school off the court.
In fact, her community service has helped her become recognized as a finalist for the Knox News I AM SPORT award, an award given to high school athletes for their commitment in sports and in their community.
“She’s one of those that will work extremely hard in the classroom, and extremely hard on the court,” Coach Justin Underwood said. “She’s on numerous committees that she’s a part of; she maintains a very high GPA.
“So, it’s just a neat thing to realize they (players) don’t just try to strive for success in a sport. They help others, they are assisting others…Special kids that come from good families that work really hard to get where they are. It’s special from a coaching standpoint to have a front row seat to watch them grow and mature.”
Senior point guard Shekinah McLaughlin said Spikes brings a strong and uplifting sense of family to the team. Spikes has also been a key part of the success for the Lady Bulldogs (25-2, 14-2) this year, and she added 10 points last night in Bearden’s 62-53 district title-clinching win over Farragut.
“She is more like a sister to me,” McLaughlin said. “She is a really good person and she transfers that onto the court by encouraging her teammates.”
Spikes’s mother used to be a principal at Cedar Bluff Elementary, which gave her an opportunity to make a difference in the community.
“I’d go to Cedar Bluff Elementary and tutor this little boy and help teach him how to read,” Spikes said. “It feels good to know that people see what I do and that it made a difference in someone’s life and helped someone.”
You can vote for Tytiaira at the link below. Voting runs through March 5.
The Knox News Sports Awards are May 29 at the Tennessee Theatre at 7 p.m. Former UT and current Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Joshua Dobbs will be the keynote speaker.