Jayda Carter’s life revolves around sports.
Since she was 4 years old, Carter has been heavily involved in athletics, playing numerous sports with Copperas Cove Parks and Recreation Department leagues.
Recently, her dedication was rewarded and she was named Copperas Cove’s Female Athlete of the Year.
“It was a great feeling to have an award so young,” the 12-year-old said.
Carter has dabbled in almost every sport imaginable, playing volleyball, softball, baseball, basketball, soccer, track and flag football, while also participating in dance, gymnastics and cheerleading at times.
While the Copperas Cove Junior High seventh-grader is passionate about anything physical, she is partial to volleyball, softball and basketball, but she is quick to admit her skills are not limited to any one sport.
“I’m good at everything,” she said.
However Carter was not the only young sports junkie to be recognized.
Tyler Price was named Male Athlete of the Year after the 12-year-old spent the last seven years of his life involved with CCPRD leagues, playing football, baseball, basketball and soccer along with countless other special events offered by the city.
As a member of the Texas Amateur Athletic Federation, CCPRD selects local athletes of the year, who then go on to compete for regional athlete of the year in hopes of being crowned state athlete of the year.
Although both Carter and Price excelled in numerous sports, the awards are based on more than just athletic prowess.
“They have to show sportsmanship, integrity, and leadership,” CCPRD Recreation Coordinator Mark Willingham said. “They need to be well-rounded. They can’t just be a single-sport phenom.”
Nominations are open to the public and submitted throughout the year before being critiqued by members of CCPRD. Ultimately, five boys and five girls are selected, and then the public votes to decide who receives the honor.
Along with their athletic endeavors, both are standout students, who are involved in various other activities at school.
Despite all her undertakings, Carter admits sports consume her.
“(Sports) pretty much take up my whole life,” she said. “I constantly do sports. I never stop … We have early practices from 5:45 a.m. to 7:30 a.m., and then school ends at 3:45 p.m., and I have to get home and do my homework. By then, it’s (late) and I have to go to bed. But my friends make it fun.”
With intentions of continuing her athletic career through high school and into college, Carter would like to participate in everything, but knows at some point she will be forced to forgo certain sports in favor of others.
Until then, Carter simply wants to enjoy every sport she can for as long as she can, and she will use her recent award as motivation.
“I will just practice more and more to try and do better than I did before and see what happens,” she said. “I’ll be trying and practicing every single day.”
Contact Clay Whittington at firstname.lastname@example.org