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Morton is doing his part for Jeannette hoop squad

| Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Kristie Linden | The Jeannette Spirit Damone Morton is a junior basketball player for the Jayhawks.

Damone Morton has been playing basketball since he was in second grade — he got his start because all of his friends were hitting the courts.

He played in the Knee-Hi Basketball League and enjoyed the sport.

“I liked the fact that you can shoot balls, that's fun, and you can run, I like that. I like to run and chase people,” he said with a laugh. He enjoys running in general and even runs track with Hempfield since Jeannette no longer fields a team. “I really like to run.”

He is also a football player and, in fact, that is his favorite sport. Morton likes basketball and is glad it keeps him in shape for football, which he hopes to pursue in college.

On the basketball court, Morton is a guard and said, “I like to grab the rebounds and go in on the layups. I like jumping, I can jump very high.”

The team has spent much of the season sitting at the top of the section, which has been a good experience for Morton.

“This team is pretty good. We all know each other and connect real good. We do extra stuff in practice and get along real good.”

He said that while there may be moments of heated competition in practices the team always comes back together. His goal for this season is simple — to get into each game and to do what he knows he's capable of doing.

“There are some nights when you're off and some when you're good. I just hope to do good at it.”

Coach Adrian Batts has been helpful in keeping his team focused as the wins have been piling up.

“Since everything has been falling into place, we're trying to keep it the same and hope to keep our motivation and keep working hard,” said Morton. “Coach Batts is the type of coach who influences good things around you. He jokes with us and is serious. He loves coaching, he has fun with us.”

After graduation next year, Morton would like to attend a college to play football. He hasn't officially settled on a school or a major yet, but he thinks he'll probably pursue some type of engineering. He likes to work with his hands and can see engineering as the right type of work for him.

This year, Morton has become active in chorus. At first, he wasn't sure it was for him, but now he enjoys it. As the year has gone on he's begun to enjoy singing more and more and he likes that it's his first class every day. Starting the day off with music is something he enjoys.

Though he plans to pursue football in college, Morton said basketball will always be part of his life.

“I'll always go down to the park in the summer and play around with it.”

Morton lives at home with his mother Toi Tucker. He has an older sister, Darein Tucker.

“I'd like to thank my teammates for supporting me and my coach and my football coach,” said Morton.

Kristie Linden is an editor for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at klinden@tribweb.com or 724-838-5154.

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