The principle of observation is extremely important, especially if you can learn to anticipate moves correctly. Doing so can mean the difference between winning and losing, in every aspect of life. For the young Lady Red, returning senior Megyn Bettridge has trained herself to not only be observant but most importantly, create her own unique competitive edge.
“What I do to stay calm during my matches is compliment the other players,” Megyn reveals. “When I complement the other players and tell them good job, or nice play, it helps me reflect on that and then I always ask myself what I can learn from it. I like to learn from other players, asking myself what their strengths and weaknesses are. I am always complementing and learning from the other players. This I believe, helps me get better every time.”
What you observe, how you see your opponent react and respond to given situations will teach you a great deal about yourself as well as your opponent. This is all a part of Megyn’s strategy to improve, to always be learning, taking on every challenge and making the necessary adjustments and sacrifices along the way.
Megyn actively works to improve her game and style of play and considers herself fortunate that she is able to split her time at work to get practice in each day. “It’s pretty fancy,” she says. “I go straight to work right after school and since tennis practice is at 5pm, I leave work just before then to get there on time. Once practice is over at 7pm I head back to work.”
Deliberately learning from your opponent rather than just playing against them is something Megyn understands and seeks to implement and leverage throughout her final year. “What I think really helps me the most is that everyone’s style of play is very different, especially when we get new people,” says Megyn. “I get a variety of experience, and see different styles of play.”
The exposure to unique styles of play is what Megyn credits her first trip to the state championships last year. Though Megyn did not get past the first round she considers the trip a complete success. “It was pretty amazing, and now that I got the experience I am looking forward to going back next year and be able to advance even more,” she states. “Even though I was a bit more nervous because the girls I was playing against were so strong, their styles were also different from the girls I play here in Cedar so the experience was great. A lot of the girls are really great to play against in the region too. Snow Canyon is hard to beat but I love the challenge they bring and what I learn from it all.”
“I think she is a fantastic player,” says Sandi. As she watches her daughter compete, she quickly takes notice of the little things Megyn does that would make any parent proud. “I see her complement the other players all the time, even during the games, and she never lets a bad game get her down. She just stays so positive,” says mom. “She even visits with other players who are having a bad game or who are frustrated and struggling to offer them help or encouragement. I just love that about her.”
Always one to take on a challenge, Bettridge looks forward to her singles matches as some of her greatest learning experiences. “I find that the way I learn the most about how to play better, and have the most fun while playing, is when I have a tough challenge ahead of me,” shares Megyn. Never backing down is a part of whom Megyn is and has been a part of her life growing up in the Bettridge household.
As the only girl in a house full of boys, competition is part of the territory and something Megyn willingly takes on, all in fun. “I definitely try to keep up though,” says Megyn. Never wanting to be out done when she competes, she shares, “the competition is rough with them. I have to make sure that if these guys want to do something like wrestle, then I have to join. I don’t want to be left out or left behind so I just join in and try to be the best,” she says with a bit of laughter behind the voice.
Chemistry with coaching staff and teammates not only supports a player’s talent and ability but also in many cases elevates it. How this chemistry builds is less important than the chemistry itself and for the players on the Lady Red’s squad, all things come natural. “The girls I play with are a blast too so it’s not too hard to have fun playing the game. We are always there for each other, always cheering each other on and it’s like we are our own little family,” Megyn shares. “Our coach is amazing too because she always makes the time and it’s like she is another mother too us, we know she cares for us.”
Understanding and appreciating the rolls in her life that her coaches have played Megyn shares, “They have always helped us learn to work hard which will help us in the future with school, getting a good job, and being responsible.”
Like her Cedar family, her family at home is very important to her and according to her mother, Sandi Bettridge, Megyn gets to spend time quality with her father in a way most wouldn’t expect. “She likes to help her dad [Keith] around the house and has been working with him on the family basement hanging sheetrock,” says Sandi.
Megyn acknowledges her daddy daughter time is a bit different from most but enjoys the time they spend together, even though the work can be challenging at times. “It definitely brings us closer working together like that,” she states. From hanging sheetrock to tearing apart and rebuilding engines, Megyn sees the challenging work as both an opportunity to learn something new and one where lasing bonds and memories are formed.
Beyond life in the halls of Cedar High and her hopes to play in college Megyn is planning on taking on the challenge of Medial School as her chosen profession. Due to a tragic family experience with older brother Eric suffering a traumatic brain injury at 14, Megyn saw first hand the impact those in the medial profession have. “I have always been interested in helping other people and when my brother had his injury and we were all going through that with him I got to see what doctors do and how they really help people. I want to be able to help people like that and serve others any way I can.”
“Nothing is going to keep her from what she wants to do,” says Sandi. “If Megyn wants to do something she will learn how and do it. She never backs down from any challenge and I am really proud of her for that.” • HSSI