EDWARDSVILLE - Alton sophomore forward Jarius Powers helped the Redbirds girls' basketball team make history on Dec. 1 with a 20-point performance, leading all scorers as Alton defeated Edwardsville 55-42 at Lucco-Jackson Gym.

Jarius PowersIt was the first win for the Redbirds over the Tigers since February of 1998. also ending a long Southwestern Conference home winning streak for Edwardsville, and in her postgame interview, Powers was a very happy person, indeed.

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"I feel great,' Powers said. "You know, I'm thankful for my team. It's a team sport, I love my team to death. You know, I'm glad we made our coach (Deserea Howard) happy, made her proud, and stuff like that."

Powers is an Auto Butler Female Athlete Of The Month for the Redbirds.

The Redbirds have been a very hard-working team for the last two seasons to get to this point, but Powers is always looking at the big picture for her club.

"Yeah, you know, we get closer and closer to the bigger picture." Powers said, "to win state and the goal to have an undefeated season, play hard, give it all we've got every time we hit the floor."

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The game itself was a scrappy and very highly competitive match for the entire 32 minutes, but a big difference in the game was that Alton was able to hit their shots, while Edwardsville couldn't, and it helped the Redbirds go on to win.

"Our guards, they work hard in practice," Powers said, "work on shots, they execute very well and I'm just happy for them."

For her part, Powers felt she played well and credited her teammates for her success on the court.

"I think I played well," Powers said. "I'm thankful for my team; without my team, I couldn't have done it. They gave me the opportunity to have a great game tonight."

Powers agreed that the historic win over the Tigers was a great feeling and knows what lies ahead for the Redbirds.

"There's nowhere else to go but up," Powers said. "We've gotta win!' she said with a big smile.

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