REHOBETH, Ala. (WTVY) - More support is pouring in for Charles Henderson basketball star Maori Davenport.
The senior is one of the best players in the nation and was a top choice for Miss Basketball for the state before being ruled ineligible in December.
Her story has captured the attention of sports fans around the nation, and now even state lawmakers are pushing for her reinstatement.
"We're very anxious right now waiting to see what's going to happen, but we want her back,” said one of Davenport’s teammates. “It would be, like, a stress reliever."
While the Lady Trojans were busy taking on the Rebels in Rehoboth, an important piece of the team was not on the court.
"I want Maori to play,” said Charles Henderson Girls Basketball Coach Dyneshia Jones. “I want to her to play. That's what we all want to see. She deserves to play. She did nothing wrong."
AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese ruled Maori Davenport ineligible after she received a check from USA Basketball for playing on their 18-under team over the summer.
USA Basketball is supposed to contact the state association and school before issuing the stipend, but they neglected to do that in Davenport's case, and took responsibility for the mistake.
"She deserves to be out here with the rest of the girls,” said Jones. “She should be playing today, with them."
Savarese acknowledged the mistake, but said the error broke the ‘amateurism rule’ and told an ESPN basketball analyst that making this one exception would open a Pandora's box to all of the rules.
Now the state legislature is getting involved.
Davenport was greeted in Montgomery by State Senator Del Marsh, who tweeted:
"I have sent a letter to the @AHSAAUpdates asking for them to reinstate Maori Davenport immediately."
State Representative Wes Allen and Troy Mayor Jason Reeves were also with Davenport and her family as she talked to legislators.
Nobody is happier to see her getting national attention than her coach.
"It's an overwhelming feeling,” said Jones. “I can't describe it. I knew we'd get support, but as many people as we have right now, it's overwhelming. It's unbelievable."
Keep in mind, the legislature has no direct authority of the AHSAA. So far, they have not commented.
So far, a petition on change.org has nearly 16,000 signatures.
Davenport helped Charles Henderson to a state title last season and led USA Basketball to a gold medal last summer.
She's committed to play college ball at Rutgers.