LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The students and teachers of one Louisville school will be paying closer attention than most to both the University of Louisville men's championship game Monday and the women's championship game Tuesday. Christian Academy has two alums playing in the games and they both played central roles in their Final Four match ups.
When you see the 1,000 point banner with Antonita Slaughter's name posted above the basketball court at Christian Academy, it's hard to deny she was destined for great things.
"Antonita was a great student of the game. She understood the game even as a middle school player," explained Don Rice, Christian Academy varsity girls coach.
This week, Slaughter is proving her skills on a national level, helping the UofL women make it to the championship game. The junior guard had 18 points in the win against California Sunday. She shot 60 percent from the three point line, but "she didn't just shoot the 60 percent. She shot from 30 feet out," bragged Rice.
Rice and the entire school couldn't be prouder, but it's not just the girl they know as 'Nita taking center stage for CAL. Right across from her 1,000 point banner in the gym, there's another one for her classmate Tim Henderson. He also had two very important three-point baskets that helped the UofL men make it to their own championship. Rice said both have more than just CAL in common.
"They're gym rats," said Rice. "They want to play ball and they want to play basketball. They didn't go to volleyball. They didn't go to field hockey. They didn't go to lacrosse. They wanted to stay with basketball and that's what they did."
It's that hard work Rice said is the reason Henderson and Slaughter are in the national spotlight right now. They're providing a lesson not only for the students around CAL, but everyone in Louisville.
"In anything that you do, whether it be business, sports or whatever athletic field that you're in, if you work hard enough it pays dividends for you," said Rice. "Those two are two of the hardest workers we've had at our school."
Rice and CAL hope the hard work will pay off with a championship trophy for both UofL teams.
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