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Lacrosse a fit for Jets senior

Jessica Russ signed to play college lacrosse with Concordia-Ann Arbor (Mich.) during a ceremony attended by her younger brother Louis and mother Nadine. CONTRIBUTED
Jessica Russ signed to play college lacrosse with Concordia-Ann Arbor (Mich.) during a ceremony attended by her younger brother Louis and mother Nadine. CONTRIBUTED

By MIKE EASTERLING / For the Record

MADISON – It took Jessica Russ little more than a month to decide running track wasn’t a fit.

It was during that brief flirtation with that sport, however, during her junior year at James Clemens High School when she found something more to her liking. She also found a pathway to college athletics.

“I saw some girls across the field practicing lacrosse,” said Russ, who signed to play for Concordia University-Ann Arbor (Mich.) during a ceremony at James Clemens earlier this month with brother Louis and parents Nadine and Steve among those present. “I had a friend playing — Hannah White. I picked up a stick and it’s been gold ever since.”

Russ, a Dothan native who moved to Madison in seventh grade, joined White and the rest of the Jets for the 2015 season. Last summer, she played for Birmingham Lacrosse United (BLU) and was named U.S. Lacrosse All-Academic.

Though she’s not even played lacrosse for a full two years, she signed on to play for the NAIA Cardinals. The Christian school is adding the sport this fall.

Lacrosse is still a club sport not sanctioned by the Alabama High School Athletic Association, though that governing body is looking at adding it as a championship sport.

“We’re trying to grow it to where it will be a school sport,” Russ said.

The Jets, coached by Keith Hutchinson, also feature players from Bob Jones. The team is currently 1-4 with its lone win over Hoover. The schedule includes games against a team from Huntsville and others from the Birmingham area.

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