By DAVID HUNTER
The sharpest three-point shooter in TSSAA history, Cannon County Lionettes star Emily Sissom became a Hall of Famer on May 21. It was a special night for her as she had her jersey retired, inducted by her equally good sister Abbey, and her high school coach Michael Dodgen was also put in the Hall of Fame.
"It was an awesome experience and an honor to be up there with people who were inducted that night," Emily Sissom said. "I think about all who have been inducted in previous years, and it is an honor to be named with those people."
During her high school career, Sissom made historical marks on the basketball court that still stand today, including 2,181 points and 385 three-pointers which is the most in TSSAA history. However, she was part of a couple of Lionette teams, which made history during her time at the school.
As a sophomore in 2009, she pitched the softball team to their only regional tournament appearance in school history. A couple of years later, Emily along with her sister Abbey helped send the Lionettes to the state basketball tournament for the first time since 1992. It is a memory Sissom still enjoys to this this day.
"It made my high school career so much better," Sissom said about the experience. "To this day my favorite basketball memory by far is going to the state tournament and getting to play at the Murphy Center. The community all came together during all of that including going to region in softball. It was a really awesome experience and playing for it really made my high school career so much better."
On the night of the Hall of Fame ceremony, those memories were remembered as Abbey inducted her, both of their basketball jerseys were retired and their head coach Dodgen was also inducted. All of that brought back special memories for Sissom.
"It is really cool and I have a lot of respect for Coach Dodgen and the things he has been able to do," Sissom said of her former coach who is now at White County. "We came in about the same time and it has been really cool to see the growth he has made after I left. I love coming back when I could watching games and seeing the girls especially seeing what a good job he has done with them as well. It is really cool to share that experience with him.
The success continued for Sissom in college at Union University both on and off the floor. On the court, she helped lead them to a couple of national championships while off the floor meant more to her as she studied to become a teacher and traveled on a mission trip to Haiti.
"I think going over there was something you could not ever imagine until you actually go there," Sissom said. "I was really humbled to see how joyful the people in Haiti are. It was really encouraging for me to go over there and see that things we value here in the USA are not as important to those people. As long as they have their family and they do not know when they will have their next meal. Those people were so joyful."
After graduating from Union this past spring, Sissom will get into the teaching field, which she compares being in the classroom to being on the court with her teammates. She gives all of the success during her sports career at both levels to all of her teammates.
"I could not have done it without any of my teammates," Sissom said. "They made my career successful and fun. I enjoyed being around my teammates during all of that."