Former teammates of Lisa Collins speak to young female athletes ahead of inaugural classic

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Published: Dec. 8, 2022 at 7:38 PM EST
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LONDON, Ky. (WYMT) - Hundreds of female athletes from South Laurel Middle and High School had the chance to hear from two Kentucky women’s basketball greats.

Valerie Still and Patty Jo Hedges spoke about adversities and triumphs as female athletes ahead of the inaugural Lisa Collins Classic, memorializing their teammate who died in April.

“These guys are legends and they were great friends with Lisa, so we thought what a better way to get them here to speak to all our female athletes, not just the basketball team,” said South Laurel girls’ basketball coach Chris Souder.

Lisa Collins was a member of all three state championship teams for South Laurel in the late seventies. She was named Miss Basketball in 1980 before playing for Kentucky, where she was a member of the 1982 SEC Championship team.

“In each one of these young athletes we see her, seventh-grade Lisa playing on a high school team,” said Still. “I think that’s what it’s all about really. It makes what we’ve done worth it. Points and rebounds and assists don’t mean anything if it doesn’t manifest in something else.”

The inaugural Lisa Collins Classic will be held at South Laurel High School all day on December 10, with several of Collins’ Kentucky teammates flying in from across the country. The 1982 SEC Championship team will be recognized at Sunday’s Kentucky women’s basketball game.