Mental focus and physical discipline is necessary to successfully balance academics with athletes and Snow Canyon’s own Madison Mooring takes on the challenge of being a three-sport student athlete.
This Lady Warrior is absolute energy, and when basketball season rolls around, Madison displays a whole new level of passion. She states, “I love basketball. I love the fast paced, up-tempo, physical contact, playing with all of my teammates; I love everything about the sport.”
Madison’s passion for the game was evident in our conversation. She understands the value of teamwork and how it plays a role in the success or failure of a team. Hard work and preparation does not always guarantee a win, but it certainly creates a greater opportunity for success and favorable outcomes when the buzzer sounds.
While the victories and defeats are what spectators remember most, Madison has learned that as a team member, the smaller moments are the most memorable. “It is nice to be able to see all of my teammates play and watch them score. I just love it.” Madison recalls a seemingly small moment that brought her team closer together. “I remember we had a foreign exchange student from Japan play for us one year. She tried out for the basketball team, and she struggled a lot,” expresses Madison. “But during the season, she got into a varsity game, and she was so excited to play. She was even able to score in the game. When she did it was so fun because the whole team just ran over to her and hugged her. We were all so excited for her.”
While some athletes suffer the misfortune of injury, and the inevitable frustration that follows, Madison feels that being in the game is worth the risk. Having suffered an injury, during soccer and going down with a torn PCL (Posterior Cruciate Ligament), Mooring experienced the emotions that come with sitting out. “It was right before basketball season, and I had to miss open gyms and practice. It was really hard not being able to participate with the team. I even had to miss the first couple of games till I got better. It was hard just watching the games.”
“I always have a good dance party before I leave the house. I blast music around the house and dance to get pumped before every game.“
When Snow Canyon’s point guard was asked how she was able to handle dealing with her injury, she displays a level of maturity and leadership that is certain to carry on through her final year with her team. “I was upset because I wanted to play but had to rehab the injury which was tough all by itself. I definitely wanted to be out there and have fun with my teammates during practice, learning new plays and everything with it. And when the games started, I wanted to play and help my team win, but I knew I couldn’t, so I just made sure to keep a positive attitude on the bench for my team, to cheer them on when they did well, be supportive of them, and motivate my teammates in other ways.”
Character and confidence are developed uniquely for each person and athlete. For Madison, regaining confidence after her injury has been a gradual process. “It took her a long time to get back to playing they way she knew she could,” says Erin. “She played timid when she returned wanting to be careful not to get hurt again. Although this will be different this year, she has gotten much more confident as her knee continues to improve, so we are excited for this year. She has such a great team. It’s a great group of girls.”
Going down and sitting out with an injury is tough, so Madison finds it important to rally around teammates who go through the very thing. “I remember when Kaylee Brooks hurt her knee and couldn’t play a lot of the season. She is so nice, and it was hard to see,” says Madison. “When senior night came around though, and Kaylee was able to play, the whole team was so happy for her. We kept cheering her on and, all ran out to her and celebrated when she scored. Having teammates that have not had as many opportunities to play and then seeing them play and be able to score in varsity games that one last time; it is so cool to see and be a part of.”
For tri-sport athletes, great physical demands are placed on the body, and staying healthy is paramount. Erin Mooring, Madison’s mother, recounts, “She is always in some sort of weightlifting or training class doing some kind of conditioning.”
Madison expects to have plenty of fun with her basketball squad her final season. “I just love playing. We have so much fun when we play, and I am not sure if I will play any differently. I try to give it my all every game because you never know when it will be your last game, but I going to have fun with my team.”
As one of the eight veteran players returning to this season, Madison hopes her teammates will remember the following about her. “I worked hard every practice, and I never gave up in a game even if we were down. I hope they remember that I was always positive, upbeat, and was part of making it a fun environment for the team and that they always had fun playing with me.”
Letting her guard down a bit, Madison admits that she will miss her love/hate relationship playing against friend, and off-season teammate, Desert Hills’ own Ashley Beckstrand. “I love and hate playing against Ashley because she is so good.” She continues, “But, when it comes to playing with my [high school] teammates, I love them all and am really going to miss them. We are just a bunch of goofballs, and we loving having a lot of fun.”
Madison opens up about her pre-game ritual. “I always have a good dance party before I leave the house. I blast music around the house and dance to get pumped before every game.” As Madison explains, her mom sits back and laughs. “If it’s not a good dance party, I feel a little weird. I have a couple songs I need to play. Then once I get to the gym’ our varsity team goes into the locker room and we have another dance party. ‘I Will Always Love You’ by Whitney Houston is always on the play list. As a team, we just belt the song out as loud as we can. It’s some great stuff. Weird I know, but it’s what makes us a team.” • HSSI