Talent as Strong as her Coffee: Elyssa Willikes, Senior Standout

You may know Elyssa as a standout on the on Simms basketball team.

“I’ve been playing since I was in fourth grade with Ness and all my older siblings, which kinda adds to the competition, you know it makes me really competitive,” Elyssa said.

Over the last three years, head coach Truitt Kinna says she’s become invaluable to the Tigers.

“Well she’s super athletic, and her work intensity is amazing. She works very hard,” Kinna said. “She’s very good at deflections. She’s very good at steals, she’s very good at reading where the pass is going to be.”

She’s also developed a chemistry with her younger sister, Janessa, and the duo has become quite the threat on the fastbreak.

“We just get each other, you know? Every time I look up she’s right there looking at me. It’s nice. We just kinda click,” Elyssa said.

“I don’t know it’s easier to play with her I think. We’re really close. We play all the sports together, every sport we play we’re doing it together, so it definitely builds our relationship.”

However, the girls do more than just play basketball together. In fact, their sisterly bond has grown even more with the opening of their family business.

“We actually own a coffee trailer that we started up, so we run that every Friday and Saturday. It’s called Something’s Brewin’, and so we decked out this mobile trailer that you like camp in, and we made it all cute inside, so now we like haul it everywhere and sell coffee.” Elyssa said.

Now that basketball season is over, Elyssa will work full time for the shop, and while she’ll still get to work with her sister, Janessa says it’ll be weird not having her on the court.

“It’s kinda scary actually. I mean, I’ve never played a sport without her. To go like a whole season with that is weird. It hasn’t hit me yet I don’t think.”

Though she’ll miss playing for the Tigers, Elyssa’s mark she’s left on her sister and the team is as strong as the coffee they brew at the shop.

“We’ve been playing together since we started basketball, so I mean yeah. I’m gonna miss that and probably pretty much everyone.”

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