By Jensen Wright
Leadership is a key aspect of any successful sports team. Often times you find leaders in more experienced players, so when it is found in such a young player like Abby Johnson, it’s nothing to be ignored. Starting varsity for our girls’ basketball team as a sophomore was one of her first great accomplishments since transferring from Douglas. Abby has now become one of the team’s best scorers and has also been one of their biggest motivators.
When asked, the rest of her teammates use one word to describe Abby: positive. “She always has a smile on her face and she just tries to keep everyone motivated and positive,” said Tear Cottier, one of the two seniors on the team this year. In return, Abby has good things to say about her fellow Lady Cobblers. She knew that coming to a new school as big as Central after leaving such a small school would be a challenge, but all the girls made it an easy adjustment and immediately made her feel welcome even prior to the start of their season together.
Abby said that Tear has been one of her biggest inspirations even in just the short amount of time they’ve played together. “After games, whether we win or lose, Tear always talks to us and let’s everyone know they did a good job. She’ll even text us all and tell us to keep our heads up after a bad game.”
Abby mentioned one of the hardest things after big games is to keep a clear head and stay humble, especially after playing a game against Stevens. Social media has played a big role in the cross-town rivalry in the past few years. Abby and Tear both agree that it’s in the best interest of all of the players not to feed into all that and just focus on the game.
With a good head on her shoulders and many positive influences guiding her, Abby has a bright future ahead of her and still has time to improve her game and gain more experience at the varsity level. She will surely continue to be a positive leader for younger girls on the team both now and on into college (Abby hopes to go to the University of South Dakota after high school).
The girls have had a fighting season, ending with a 12-10 record. With the closing of this season, they will be saying goodbye to two of their starters, seniors Tear Cottier and Audrey Bunge. With only a handful of upcoming seniors for the 2015-2016 season, Abby will again be one of the younger girls stepping up and filling in the missing spots.
But there’s no doubt in the coach’s mind that she’ll be ready for it again. Positive was also the one word that came to Coach Blomme’s mind when asked about Abby. “She’s a good kid, she’s always a positive influence on the other girls. She goes out there and gives it her all 100% of the time and earned her respect from all of the girls.” Coach Blomme says he knows that she will continue to improve her skills and also continue to be a great leader for her years to come as a Lady Cobbler.