GARLAND COUNTY, Ark. – In just a few days, two Cutter Morning Star seniors will hit the court for the first time together.
Under Arkansas Activities Association rules, Jalen Carter and Ahmod Davis were forced to sit out last season after transferring into the district.
On Tuesday, they will join the team as Eagles and the boys are more than excited.
“I’m feeling pumped,” Davis said. “I’m feeling good.”
The two transferred to the Cutter Morning Star School District through School Choice back in 2022 with the impression they’d step right on the court.
The game clock was paused in August. Both teenagers were told that because they transferred districts, they would have to wait 365 days to play in a game under AAA eligibility rules.
“It was like a heartbreak, but I just had to get through it and move on,” Jalen Carter said.
Head Coach Beau Brickell said the two held their head high despite having to forego their junior year on the court.
“To take a year away from a child who only has three years in high school, its very unfair,” he said.
Brickell said the two continued to come to practices and participate in all team events unable to reap the rewards of a win.
He said it’s the first time something like this has happened in his program but knows many other coaches have gone through the same situation. Luckily, the streak may just be over.
In April of this year, the Arkansas Legislature passed a bill that prohibits transfer students from being denied playing time. Brickell said it’s a big win for future athletes.
“If a child chooses to go to another school because the math program pushes their student to excel, or if they choose to go to another program because the band gives them a different opportunity, what’s different about sports?” he said.
After a long-awaited year, Carter and Davis will become Eagles, knowing before the game even starts, they’ve already won.
Cutter Morning Star will take on Gospel Light Christian in their first game of the season on Tuesday night.