Xavier's Emily Jasper enjoys time on the court

HS journalism: From volleyball to basketball, junior is invested in success

Xavier’s Emily Jasper goes to the basket against Grinnell’s Macy Harris during a Class 4A state quarterfinal in Des Moines last season. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
Cedar Rapids Xavier’s Emily Jasper passes the ball during a Class 4A volleyball regional final in October. (Cliff Jette/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — Investment in dreams and a constant grind are the ingredients for success.

This is something Cedar Rapids Xavier junior Emily Jasper knows all too well.

As the volleyball season came to an end and basketball started, this middle hitter turned into a post.

“Basketball is a whole different atmosphere, so it takes longer to get adjusted,” Jasper said. “We have to run a lot in basketball and not at all in volleyball.”

Although the environment is different, the goals and fundamentals stay the same.

“From my volleyball coaches I learned to stay focused and learn something every time I step out onto the court, practice or game,” Jasper said.

Something Jasper has learned from her time on the court is making the most of everything and relishing the memories. She has used these life lessons to positively impact her friends and teammates.

“Em always works hard and does everything with a smile on her face,” friend and junior guard Jenae Marshall said. “She always manages her time well with family, friends, and school.”

Even though Jasper’s teammates look up to her for her balancing skills, she has her fair share of stress.

“I do not have a lot of free time between basketball, school and club volleyball,” she said. “A lot of times it gets very stressful.

“I try to spend my free time relaxing with my friends and sleeping.”

After basketball season, Jasper will take her returning spot on the varsity tennis team. Until then, she can be found, once again, in the Ron Thillen Gymnasium.

The Saints girls’ basketball team is 3-3 this season after losses to Iowa City West and Cedar Falls. They host Linn-Mar on Friday.