Picayune’s Magee makes her mark as a freshman

Published 3:01 am Sunday, March 11, 2007

Even though her team didn’t enjoy much success on the basketball court this season, Picayune’s Dedrea Magee made much progress individually in her first year in college basketball.

Magee, the former Mississippi Gatorade Player of the Year at Picayune Memorial High, started the last seven games at point guard for the University of Alabama, as the Lady Tide finished 10-20 overall and went winless in 17 games in Southeastern Conference play.

“There’s a big difference between high school and college play, huge,” Magee, who is back in Pearl River County this week on Spring Break from the Capstone, said. “Starting as a true freshman gave me some confidence. When the season started I wasn’t sure that being able to start this year was possible, but I just kept working and stayed patient and it paid off.”

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Magee certainly saved her best for last. She scored in double figures three times in the last five games, including hitting a career high 15 points in the season finale, a loss in the SEC Tournament to Ole Miss. She also scored 11 points against the Lay Rebels just two weeks before that.

Overall, she played in 22 of Alabama’s 30 games. She finished the year averaging three points and two rebounds per game, and with 24 assists and 18 steals on the year.

“We’re really young, and the coach was looking for someone to step up at the point,” Magee added. “College ball is a lot faster and a lot more aggressive, it just took some time to adjust to the style of play.”

Magee averaged right at 25 points per game as a senior for the Lady Maroon Tide, and was named first team all-state as well.

She is hoping her fast finish to this season will help her get off to a quick start during her sophomore campaign.

“I just want to keep gradually growing as a player and improving each day,” Magee said. “There is so much to learn, but I just want to keep working and be ready for next year.”