Multi-sport athlete finds home in Medora

Having participated in sports in middle school at Medora, Lillie Hatfield said it was an easy decision for her to participate in two or three sports throughout her high school career.

“I like being involved in school,” she said. “I think you get the most out of it if you are active. It’s really fun. You get to hang out with your friends, you make a lot of new friends, actually, and I’ve become close with all my teammates.”

She has played basketball and volleyball for four years, and she also ran cross-country and track and was a cheerleader for one year.

Hatfield has been a three-year starter in basketball and leads the team in scoring this winter at 13 points per game.

She has scored in double figures in every game this season with a high game of 23 against Columbus Christian.

“I like taking it to the basket even though I’m smaller,” she said. “I just like being aggressive and getting in there.”

She said having 10 players on the roster not only helps in games but also at practice because the Hornets can have regular five-on-five workouts.

“I think we’re a stronger team now that we have 10 players,” she said.

On defense, Hatfield said she feels like the team is more successful playing zone than man-to-man.

So far this season, the Hornets have only won one game. Hatfield said it will take hard work to increase that total.

“We’re just going to have to work harder and figure out some more plays to run and just drive to the basket,” she said. “We need work on our passing and to shoot more. We’re just going to work our hardest and try and win some more games.”

In volleyball, Hatfield played all-around and was always outside or back.

“I’m left-handed, and whenever I was hitting back, it was easier for me to hit line and easier outside to hit angle,” she said. “Back row is where I was strongest. I liked back right. For some reason, I liked it when they hit angle. It was the easiest for me to pick up.”

She said her responsibilities were playing defense, digging and passing to the setter. She said the key to making a good pass is to keep your hands even.

“You just had to throw your body on the floor and get under it, pretty much,” she said.

This past season, the Hornets won 10 matches, which was the most in Hatfield’s three years with the sport. She said the players’ experience helped.

“We had six seniors going into it, so we were all pretty experienced. We had younger people coming up, so it was just a good year for us,” she said. “I loved everything about volleyball. I just loved playing with my team. The coaches were awesome. It was just fun.”

For all sports, Hatfield said you have to practice hard.

“Practice is very important,” she said. “Sports come first to me before anything. We get together, we have fun and we work hard, then we win games.”

Confidence also is key, she said.

“If you’re not in a good mood, you’re not going to play well, so that’s my biggest thing,” she said. “I get down on myself, then I feel like I’m letting my whole team down. If you make a mistake, you’ve just got to shake it off and play defense.”

Hatfield has been a captain in volleyball and basketball and said she is proud that her coaches look to her for leadership.

“I like to be a leader and set a good example for everybody,” she said.

Hatfield said she has enjoyed attending Medora schools since fifth grade.

“I like it here,” she said. “We’re like one big family. Everyone knows everybody. We’re all friends here, so it’s good.”

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Name: Lillie Hatfield

School: Medora High School

Parents: Amber Hatfield and Chad Hatfield

Siblings: Evan, Taylor, Gavin and Cory

Sports: Basketball, four years; volleyball, four years; track and field, one year; cross-country, one year; cheerleading, one year

Athletic highlights: Track and field school records in the 800-, 1,600- 3,200-meter runs; coaches award for volleyball in 2017

Organizations: Teens for Change ambassador, student council, Beta Club, 2017 homecoming queen, class president

Plans after high school: Attend Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus for physical therapy

Favorite food: Everything

Favorite TV show: “One Tree Hill”

Favorite musician: Beyoncé

Favorite movie: Documentaries

Favorite team and athlete: Indiana University and Tyra Buss