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Q&A with Madison Murray, Russellville softball senior

Q: How old were you when you started playing softball?
A: I started around 5 or 6 years old.
Q: Was there anyone special in your life that helped you become a great player, and how?
A: Coach Darren Mitchel. He was my travel ball coach, and he pushed me to be a gritty player. He made me believe I was one of the greatest players, as well as pushed me during some gruesome practices.
Q: How do you get ready for a game?
A: I usually try to get mentally prepared the day before so I’m focused. One example is maybe I’ll hit a bunch of reps before the game.
Q: What do you like to do when you are not involved with softball?
A: I like to play basketball when I’m not playing softball. Or just watch movies or play video games.
Q. What factors do you feel have influenced you the most to become the player and person you are today?
A: The greatest factor that influences me is the adrenaline I get from every great play. My favorite thing about softball is my defensive game, when I dive out and catch a base. I love the thrill as well as the crowd. It gets me pumped up, and I love every second of it.
Q: Did you have any routines or superstitions before or in a game?
A: Well as far as my superstitions go, if I wear my hair a certain way, and I do good that day, I try to wear it that way as much as possible. Recently this year my best combination is a ponytail with my bow and visor. And then when putting on my uniform, I always put it on from the bottom to the top. I do the same thing with my basketball uniform.
Q: What is your favorite softball memory?
A: My favorite softball memory at the moment is when I was playing for Shoals Rhythm. We played an ace pitcher, and I remember vividly when she threw her change up. I don’t think I’ll ever hit a ball that hard again. I got chills from the contact, and there was no doubt about that ball going over the fence.
Q: What softball player has influenced you most in the game? Why?
A: I don’t really have anyone other than just the game itself. But I really strive to have the skills that Sis Bates dominates with at shortstop.
Q: What is the greatest obstacle you have had to overcome in your playing career?
A: The greatest obstacle I’ve ever faced was when I tore my ACL sophomore year playing basketball. It was absolutely painful, and I felt like I’d never be the same, but I am actually pleased with how I came back. My game hasn’t really changed at all; in fact, I cherished all my sports even more because I was shown it could all be taken away.
Q: What is life after being a softball player for you?
A: Well after my college career I’m going to be trying my best to get as far as I can down the medical field. Other than that I plan to serve God on numerous mission trips since I will finally have the time.
Q: What are your thoughts on your season and career coming to an abrupt end?
A: I think it’s very disappointing that our season is over, but it shows how important every game and at bat is, and no player should ever take it for granted.