Justin finishes freshman season of basketball at Davenport University

GRAND RAPIDS — It was a learning season for Jamie Justin and an enjoyable one.

The former Pine River three-sport athlete focused on basketball during her collegiate freshman season at Davenport University.

Justin played an extensive junior varsity schedule and some varsity games at Davenport, an NAIA school in Grand Rapids.

“It was good experience and I had a lot of fun,” Justin said. “The group of girls I played with are really nice.”

Justin saw action in six varsity games and saw a full schedule of junior varsity. She averaged three points a game for the varsity.

“On JV, I was a point guard and I more like a team leader,” she said. “When I moved up to varsity, I was more like a shooting guard.”

Justin played a key role on Pine River’s district championship team in 2012-13 and said she was able to make a smooth transition from JV to varsity collegiate basketball.

“It didn’t really take much time to adjust,” she said, adding that the chance to play a JV schedule “was really helpful for me and I feel like I’ll be ready to play varsity next year.”

Davenport lost two seniors and another guard, Justin said, plus a post player.

“I’ll be more like a shooting guard on varsity,” she said. “The fast pace of the game, it’s definitely more upbeat and you have to be on your toes, that’s for sure.”

Davenport has been an NAIA power in recent seasons. It was 34-2 and NAIA national semifinalists, plus Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference champions.

“We have almost all of our players returning,” Justin said. “We only lost one starter and key player. We’ll be just as good if not better next year.”

Justin and her teammates haven’t put their basketballs away for the offseason.

“We’re actually practicing five days a week still,” Justin said. “Once summer comes around, we’ll have open gyms two to three days a week.”

Justin is looking forward to three more seasons at Davenport.

“I’m very happy with where I’m at,” she said.