Renaming Bell’s basketball court is a highlight for Maci Morris

Published 11:54 am Friday, August 11, 2023

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She had a brilliant high school career at Bell County that included winning the school’s first regional title and being named Kentucky Miss Basketball. She had an equally terrific career at the University of Kentucky where she became one of the top 10 scorers in program history before going to play professionally overseas.

But even for Maci Morris her most recent honor is a bit overwhelming when the Bell County Board of Education named the high school basketball floor the “Maci Morris Court” in her honor.

“I am just so appreciative of what they are doing,” said Morris. “It’s such a great honor. Not many people get a court named after them and for them to do this for me is just awesome. The AD (athletics director) and superintendent just told me that I did so much for the school and then at UK and always represented Bell County so well that they wanted to do this.”

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Morris scored 3,368 points in her six-year career at Bell County, the most in program history, and was the 2015 Miss Basketball. She scored 1,692 points at Kentucky, No. 7 all-time in program history. She also was named the 2019 Southeastern Conference Scholar Athlete of the Year her senior year and a first-team all-SEC pick.

“I truly never ever thought about a court being named after me. My brother and I would talk trash growing up and I would say, ‘This is my court.’ Now I really have a court named after me,” Morris, 27, said. “Usually it is someone a lot older or who has even passed away who gets an honor like this. For me to be this young and get recognized like this is  unbelievable.

“Hopefully one day I will have kids and maybe they will get to play on the court named for me. Think how awesome that will be.”

When Morris was named Miss Basketball, the highway signs posted in her honor spelled her name “Macy” and still have not been corrected.

“They did get my name spelled right on the court,” she laughed and said.

Morris is a physician’s assistant in the emergency room at Saint Joseph Health in London. She doesn’t often get to play basketball, but will still try to shoot or play a pickup game if she has the time.

“When I did my camp not too long ago I was playing pickup with the older group, and I had fun running back up and down the court, but it also made me realize how bad out of shape I was,” Morris said.

Morris working in eastern Kentucky is no surprise based on how she’s always tried to give back to her home area.

“That is where I grew up, and people supported  me in high school, college and even now,” she said. “I want to support them, too. Right now this job is just a starting point for me and I’ll see where it goes. Nothing is set in stone yet. I’ll just see where life takes me.

“I haven’t been working here long. There has been a lot to learn about how to do things in the ER but I love to help people. Taking care of people is what I do and it is rewarding.”

Morris said there will be an official court-naming ceremony sometime during the upcoming season when Bell is playing a district game.