Hite, Hairston more than teammates

Seniors Chelsea Hite and India Hairston are teammates on the Eastern Michigan University women’s basketball team. Off the court, they’re in a unique situation—they’re roommates.

“We’ve been roommates for four years, so we’re pretty close,” Hite said.

Hairston was quick to point out Hite is a funny person off the court.

“She is just one funny girl. I learned a lot about her over the last four years,” Hairston said.

Hite had good things to say about her roommate as well.

“India’s the perfect roommate. We mesh together,” Hite said. “We just know that if one of us is not in the mood to talk, we know that they’re not mad, we just need to be alone.”

On the court, both women are all business.

“We go at each other on the court … not verbally, but we compete with each other,” Hite said. “We make each other better, but once we’re off the court we just let that go. You can’t bring that stuff off the court.”

Hairston pointed out that her 6-foot-4-inch roommate’s height is what helps her most on the court.

“She’s just so tall. I can just throw the ball up to her and she’ll just go get it,” Hairston said.

Off the court, both ladies enjoy going to the movies.

“I’m a chill person,” Hite said. “I like to go to the movies, hang out with my team. My team is my family. I’m just hanging out with them most of the time.”

There is one movie that Hite mentioned wanting to go see, but her roommate drew the line at seeing it: The recently released movie “Mama.”

“We are super movie people,” Hite said. “I am a big horror person. I love paranormal movies. We usually go as a team to see those. I’m trying to see ‘Mama’ next.”

“I enjoy going to the movies,” Hairston said. “Actually, [Chelsea] tried to drag me to go see ‘Mama.’ I didn’t want to go. I think eventually I’ll go. I’ll go see scary movies, but I won’t go see that one.”

That is where the similarities end for the women.

Hite grew up in a small town in Indiana named Ligionier.

“It’s really small. It’s about two hours away from Indianapolis and about a half hour or 45 minutes away from Fort Wayne,” Hite said.

Hite was involved in athletics from a very young age.

“I can’t remember when I wasn’t playing basketball. I’ve been playing my whole life,” Hite said.

That trend continued through high school as well.

“I was a three-sport athlete in high school,” Hite said. “I played volleyball, basketball and I ran track.” Hite said. “I was the main sprinter. I ran the 100-, 200- [and] 400 [meter] and 4×100 [relay].”

When it came to picking one of the three sports, Hite said the decision was a very easy one.

“Basketball was something I was always passionate about,” Hite said. “Track was just something I did for fun and to keep in shape for basketball.”

When Hite goes home, there is one main food she said she eats when she gets there.

“Mashed potatoes and gravy,” Hite said. “When we go home for Thanksgiving, definitely mashed potatoes and gravy.”

Hite’s favorite singer is French-Canadian singer Celine Dion.

“Celine Dion is my favorite singer. I know that always strikes everyone as different, but that’s my favorite singer,” Hite said.

The opposite of Hite, Hairston came late to the athletic party.

“Actually, I picked [basketball] up in high school,” Hairston said. “I was a late bloomer. I didn’t start off like everyone started off when they were younger. I started off in 10th grade.”

Hairston said it was her brother who finally got her to pick up the sport.

“He told me I was too tall not to play a sport,” Hairston said.

When she’s off the court, Hairston loves to go to the bowling alley.

“I like to bowl. That’s my favorite thing to do,” Hairston said. “If you ask my teammates, they’ll tell you that’s my favorite thing to do.”

Hairston is a very family-oriented person. She spends as much time with them as possible when she goes home to Flint, Mich., which is about an hour north of Ypsilanti.

“I like to just spend a lot of time with [my family]. We don’t get a lot of time at home,” Hairston said. “I like to take my sister shopping or just spend time with her. I like to spend time with my mom and dad. My dad and I like to watch sports together. My mom’s not really into sports like that. My dad and I sit around a lot on Saturdays and just watch sports together.”

Hairston mentioned her dad was the big cook in the family. When he cooks, there are two foods she really enjoys.

“My favorite foods are spaghetti and chicken,” Hairston said.

When she’s not bowling or being dragged to see horror movies, Hairston enjoys playing video games on her PlayStation 3.

“I like ‘NBA 2K,’” Hairston said.

Hairston’s musical taste is very unique. She enjoys rhythm and blues, but with a slight twist.

“I actually like music with violins,” Hairston said. “You can YouTube it, there’s actually a guy who plays violin to R&B songs.”

Both teammates are traveling to Newtown, Conn., this weekend with the team as they put on a clinic for the children affected by the Dec. 14, 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

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