Nakia Weston

Nakia Weston, Glenn High School basketball

The second half of last season turned out to be an ongoing struggle for Glenn point guard Nakia Weston. Now that she has weathered that experience, she’s much better off and so are the Bobcats, who won 13 of their first 14 games.

Weston, a 5-4 senior, sat out for nearly a year after suffering a torn anterior-cruciate ligament as a sophomore. When she returned, playing time was scarce. But that changed in a matter of weeks when then-starting point guard Hannah Barr ended her season with a torn Achilles tendon last January.

Being sidelined for such a lengthy stretch, Weston had a lot of rust in her game.

“I didn’t think that making a comeback would be that hard,” she said. “When it comes to playing basketball, I was so used to relying on my instincts.

“My mind was racing at 100 miles an hour, but my body could only go 60. So, it wasn’t until last summer when I went to team camp and played AAU travel ball, that I finally felt comfortable doing the things I normally do on the court.”

Weston is averaging 8.8 points, 4.1 assists and 3.2 steals per game this season. She provides blink-of-an-eye quickness, game savvy and a much-improved jumper for the Bobcats, who are ranked No. 1 in the MaxPreps state rankings for Class 4-A.

Coach Melvin Heggie readily admits that his on-court demeanor is noticeably different when Weston is on the floor. “Nakia is our engine,” he explained. “When the ball is in her hands, I’m at peace on the bench.

“She’s probably the quickest guard in the city. But now she’s also a scoring threat. When teams leave her open, she makes them pay.”

So far, the Bobcats are looking like the team to beat in the Central Piedmont 4-A Conference. But that’s hardly a guarantee they will own the title. Weston fully understands that her team must maintain proper perspective to play up to its potential.

During the Christmas break, Glenn suffered a 51-27 blowout loss to St. Frances Academy of Maryland in the John Wall Holiday Classic played in Raleigh. The setback served as a painful reminder that the Bobcats are not invincible.

“That loss really humbled us,” she said. “We know it’s not going to be easy, especially since we’ll play conference teams twice, and maybe three times in the same season. But we’re confident that we can make a strong playoff run and bring it (a state championship) home.”

Weston’s basketball career isn’t likely to end at Glenn. So far, she has attracted interest from several Division II programs, including Winston-Salem State, Virginia State, Livingstone and Francis Marion (S.C.).

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Craig T. Greenlee

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