Nikki Jeck may be small, but she has all the abilities that Union College basketball coach Tim Curry is always looking for in a point guard.

The 5-foot-2 senior easily left her mark at Madison Southern High School, finishing her career as the school’s all-time leading scorer with 1,772 points. She also holds the school record for assists — 779 — and steals — 572.

“Nikki is a perfect fit for what we do as a basketball team, no doubt,” Curry said Thursday following Jeck’s signing of a national letter of intent to play for the Lady Bulldogs next season. “We look at point guards for kids who can handle the basketball, pass the basketball and also score. She possessions all those qualities. Some coaches see kids and think they are too small, but we’ve had great success with smaller point guards.”

The coach said he has a back-up point guard graduating this year and really sees Jeck stepping in next season and contributing right away.

Jeck has watched as other friends have signed during her four years at Southern, but nothing could compare to her own day.

“It’s pretty amazing,” the guard said. “I’ve been dreaming about this for a long time and now it’s actually happened its probably the greatest feeling ever.”

Along with her school records, Jeck was named to the 44th All-District Tournament Team four times (2005-2008), was on the 11th Region Tournament Team in 2007 and the 11th Region Team in 2008.

She had two milestones her senior season — breaking the all-time girls scoring record on Jan. 3 against Frankfort and then breaking the all-time school scoring record on Jan. 24 against Boyle County.

The senior had several other schools interested — Transylvania and Centre — but the combination of athletics and academics is what really got her to Union. She will be a part of the college’s honors program when she gets to the Barbourville campus this fall.

And it did not hurt that the Lady Bulldogs are the two-time defending Appalachian Athletic Con-ference champions, earning automatically bids to the NAIA national tournament the past two years.

Part of this past year’s team, Lyndsey Simmons, also played a role in helping Curry get Jeck to Union. Simmons, currently a freshman and a former Madison Central standout, talked with her former high school rival.

“Ever since I started looking at Union, she’s been there encouraging me all the way,” Jeck said of Simmons. “She told me all the great things about the program and the school and that definitely helped.”

Another plus will be reuniting with long-time teammate and close friend Tiffany Willis. Willis plays golf at Union and will be a sophomore next year. Jeck said the two hope to room together and that it is nice to have someone there who can help with the transition.

Jeck is the first Lady Eagle to sign to play college basketball since current Madison Southern assistant coach Jill Abney signed with Transy in 2000.

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