Hard work pays off for Brownstown senior across three sports


Claire Poulton was a three-sport athlete in middle school, so it wasn’t a hard decision for her to continue doing three sports at Brownstown Central High School.

She said she has several reasons she has played basketball and softball both for four years, and ran cross-country for two years after playing volleyball for two years.

“It’s always been a goal of mine since I was a three-sport athlete in middle school, and being active keeps you healthy and keeps me busy and working hard,” Poulton. “It keeps me focused on my goals. With sports, I think it helps your performance in school, typically.”

Poulton, who began her basketball career playing in the Enter His Courts program, said she enjoys playing at both ends of the floor.

“I’m typically a wing, so I’m either trying to create shots by passing into our post players or just making the plays. I like 3-poitners,” Poulton said. “ I prefer the right wing. I like playing against a man because I feel like you have more options with the drive and dish.”

Her high-point game this season was 13 against Henryville.

“I like full-court press because I feel like being active the whole time gets you fired up gets the defense going,” she said about playing defense.

“I love the home games. I love the atmosphere and hearing the band play for us, cheering us on. This is my first year being full-time varsity and it’s just a different experience, and with even the lights turned off on the top of the gym makes it so much better and enjoyable.

Poulton recalled starting her softball at an early age playing on the small diamond at the softball complex.

“I enjoy how the game is constantly changing. It’s spontaneous,” Poulton said. “There is no set thing that is going to happen. You have to be ready for everything. Also that while you are still a team, individual performance still does matter because you can control how well you perform hitting.

“So there is a lot of individual work that goes into it, but then again at the same time you’re all working together, coming together as a team.”

She played a lot at first base earlier in her high school career, but moved to the outfield last season.

“I like to play outfield, either right field or left field. I know when you see the 3, 4 or 5 hitter come up you know, ‘OK, they’re going to crush this ball,’ so even being in right field you’re going to adjust over and play a little deeper, and even the same thing in left field,” Poulton said. “You’re going to be almost in the corner.

“In the outfield if you make a mistake, you always have the centerfielder backing you up, so you’re able to rely on your teammates to help you out to make the play.”

Poulton said she is prepared to swing at the first pitch when she goes up to bat.

“I like to hit the first pitch because it’s going to typically be the best pitch that pitcher is going to throw you,” she said. “I tend to lay off rise balls because my bad habit is popping up so that’s one pitch I try to avoid.”

Making the change to cross-country was a good one for Poulton.

“I was in volleyball, but it wasn’t a very good fit for me, and I wanted to stay a three-sport athlete. So I was like ‘I’ll give cross-country a shot,’ and it turns out I liked it and I did pretty well,” Poulton said.

She helped the Braves place second in the Mid-Southern Conference meet and received the mental attitude award last fall, and earned academic all-state honors the past two years.

She said her career-best time was 22:10.

“(Coach Maria) Conklin always gave us goals, and runners to stay with like Silver Creek’s fourth or fifth runner,” Poulton said. “That was kind of a goal, but it was also ‘do your best, just keep pushing.’ No matter who is in front of you, just keep looking forward to find them and pass them.

“Because I was so new to running, I never had a set pace. There were girls on my team that were very steady and consistent. My times were never consistent so I would have a fast first mile, then my second and third mile I just pushed and ran as fast as I could.”

Poulton said you should always practice hard in whatever sport you do.

“Practice should always be harder than games because practice will make you ready for games,” Poulton said. “When practice is harder, you’ll be ready for harder games. The mental part is definitely the most important. Cross-country is definitely one of the most mental tough sports there is because running hurts. Running is very painful, yet you’re mental confidence in yourself pushing you through that third mile makes you successful.

“I think mental toughness has carried over to my other sports. Now, basketball in the fourth quarter when you’re tired, you have to be mentally tough, be able to push through the pain, and still able to be aggressive on defense.”

She has enjoyed attending BCHS.

“I loved the school, I love the community. We have excellent teachers her,” Poulton said. “I’ve taken several AP courses. I’m looking to finish off all my seasons strong.”

[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”Poulton file” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

Name: Claire Poulton

High school: Brownstown Central

Parents: A.J and Susan Poulton

Sibling: Dylan

Sports: basketball 4 years, softball 4 years, cross-county 2 years, volleyball 2 years

Athletic highlight: CC-2017, 2018 academic all-state, 2017 MSC all-conference, 2018 mental attitude; softball- 2017 mental attitude award, 2017 all-county team; basketball- 2017 JV free throw award

Organizations: president National Honor Society, vice-president student council, vice-president senior class, lettermen’s club

Plans after high school: attend college major in biochemistry and become medical researcher

Favorite food: chicken pot pie

Favorite TV show: I Love Lucy

Favorite musician: Lauren Daigle

Favorite movie: Mulan

Favorite team: Ohio State Buckeyes


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