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Dodd cements legacy at Greene Central

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Imajae Dodd (#23) drives the ball past a Westover player during a game on Jan. 22, 2019.

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By Jake Keator
The Daily Reflector

Friday, March 8, 2019

Greene Central basketball superstar Imajae Dodd is nearing the end of his high school athletic career.

Dodd has been a staple of Rams basketball for four seasons, as fans, media and community supporters have watched his game improve from year to year. As his time in Snow Hill comes to a close, Dodd is preparing for his next chapter as a part of the UNC-Wilmington program. 

Before his departure, however, Dodd has another hurdle to clear, taking down an undefeated Farmville Central squad in the 2-A East Regional Final Saturday in Minges Coliseum on East Carolina’s campus. It is the Rams’ third consecutive appearance in the regional final. 

The Rams and Jaguars have met three times this season, with FC walking away victorious every time. For the fourth and final iteration, Dodd is looking to overthrow the No. 1 seed and make one last statement.

“There’s no changes (this time),” Dodd said of his preparation for FC. “We just have to come out there and play our game. We’ve been playing well these past couple of games. We’re gonna come out and play our game, we’re not going to change how we play.”

Dodd earned a spot on the varsity roster as a freshman, playing primarily as a rim defender and defensive specialist. As he’s grown and gained experience, he has developed a high-flying and athletic offensive game that bring fans to their feet every time he touches the ball. 

“These past four years have been an amazing experience,” Dodd said. “Coming in as a freshman and not having any offense, developing each year and progressing, it’s just amazing to see how my progress has picked up over the years.”

Throughout his time in Snow Hill, Dodd has faced many questions. From the development of his game to if he would even remain with the Rams. In 2017, there was speculation Dodd would leave Greene County for greener pastures and more college recognition, but in the end he chose to stay close to home. 

“Some of that was true,” Dodd said of the transfer chatter. “There were a couple schools I was looking at, but I prayed about it and thought about it and decided this was the place for me. Greene County is home.”

As the end of his time with GC nears, Dodd has nothing but fond memories of his time playing high school ball. From the rowdy Ram Pen, to the support of faculty, friends, coaches and his family. 

“I’m just going to miss the people overall,” Dodd said. “People in Greene County are just nice people. It’s hard to find people who just care for you and are going to be down for you like they are, and the support of the Ram Pen means a lot. Getting out in front of them every night, they let you know how they feel. If you’re doing something right they’ll let you know. If you’re not, they’ll let you know that too.” 

Once he arrives at UNCW, Dodd will certainly get his fair share of attention, something head coach Blue Edwards is plenty experienced with himself. Edwards, a GC alum, ECU basketball legend and former first-round NBA draft pick, has helped Dodd prepare for dealing with fans and the media in college.

“He just told me not to let it overwhelm me,” Dodd said. “He said, ‘Don’t let it get to your head, just keep a cool head on your shoulders.’”

In what could possibly be his final game in a Rams uniform, Dodd is ready to face one of the biggest challenges of a career with a very bright future.

Contact Jake Keator at jkeator@reflector.com, 252-329-9594 and follow @JakeKeatorDR on Twitter.

 

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