Delta Charter senior shows growth, discipline during high school career

Published 12:02 am Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Just two weeks before starting her freshman year of high school, Jania Burns took a chance joining a program that had no past, no legacy and not a single person to lean on.

Since becoming a member of the first graduating class in Delta Charter School’s history, Burns has learned her responsibilities along the way leading the Lady Storm as one of five seniors.

“It’s definitely been worth it,” the standout pitcher said. “I wouldn’t want to play for any other program. They say we’ve been the seniors for four years, and it’s been a family.”

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Burns enrolled at Delta Charter after hearing about the program the summer beforehand. DCS coach Jeannie Beach, who had been working with Burns in a summer league, asked her if she would like to come along and when Burns asked her father, he ultimately granted her the go-ahead.

While Burns said she is thankful DCS came along when it did, she admitted it has had its challenges.

“There was nobody above us,” she said. “We’ve had to be a leader to every single class. We’ve just been going on our own.”

Growing with the school wasn’t the only thing, either. Burns began working on her strike in junior high and said she has had countless pitching workouts since. She said she is still learning to cope with being the center of the game.

“I really had to work to get where I am. I knew I had the mechanics, but I didn’t really see it as my role until ninth grade,” Burns said.

Burns said while it can be stressful to remain calm in the moment, it’s a lot easier with teammates who have been through the same thing.

Graduating with Burns will be Lady Storm players Maecee Thorton, Laken Hood, Shauneisha Crumpton and Kaitlyn Dooley.

“We have our chemistry, and it’s all we know,” she said. “We just keep adding on every year.”

Since playing softball since the age of 3, Beach said Burns’ dependable nature is something that will take her a long way.

“I feel like I could show up 20 minutes late for a practice and she would have them going,” she said. “She is one of those you can tell has the self-discipline that she wants to be the best and didn’t mind working hard to get there. She knows we have to win every pitch and that’s not something a lot of us have at this age. She’s a good kid.”

And when it’s all over, Burns will get a chance once more — a chance to say she built history.

“Thank goodness the opportunity was here,” Burns said.