Abigail “Abbie” Hershberger
WHAT POSITION DO YOU PLAY? Middle blocker.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE POSITION AND LEAST FAVORITE TO PLAY? AND WHY? I am the most comfortable playing middle blocker, but any front row hitting positions are enjoyable. I am the least confident as a backrow passer, but I still enjoy it.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN PLAYING VOLLEYBALL? I have been playing volleyball since sixth grade.
WHAT DO YOU FIND MOST CHALLENGING ABOUT THE GAME? Multitasking. You have to focus on many different aspects of the game all at once. To be able to keep an eye on the ball at all times, get to the spots on the court that you need to be, run plays and make sure you don’t get in anyone else’s way can be a struggle.
HOW DO YOU BALANCE SCHOOL WORK, SOCIAL LIFE AND PRACTICE? There is never any downtime during the high school season. I had practice everyday and games on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I never had much time for a social life during the season and I would do my homework at any free moment I had, either before/after practice or on the van on our way to a game.
WHAT IS YOUR PROUDEST MOMENT IN VOLLEYBALL? My proudest moment would be when I made varsity as a sophomore, even though I had sat bench all year as a freshman. I worked hard and joined a club team which helped me improve dramatically and allowed me the amazing opportunity of an extra year on varsity. Equally as important was my senior year when I got the Team MVP award and All-League MVP award. The team MVP award was something I had always wanted but never expected to accomplish.
DO YOU SEE VOLLEYBALL IN YOUR FUTURE? IF SO WHERE AT? I do see volleyball in my future. Currently I am trying to join a community college volleyball team, as I have always wanted to play college volleyball, and after college I want to stay involved by possibly referring or coaching and playing for fun on the side.
HOW DO YOU PREPARE FOR A GAME? I am a religious person, so before a game my dad and I would pray. This always helped relieve any pressure I felt. I also would warm up with another teammate to help get my adrenaline pumping for the game.
WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST STRENGTH ON THE COURT? My greatest strength is my ability to shrug things off. Sophomore year on varsity I felt so much pressure and let every little thing affect me and my playing. After that a switch went off in my brain and I take everything that happens in a game and push it to the side. I don’t let myself dwell on my mistakes.
HOW DO YOU WANT YOUR TEAMMATES TO REMEMBER YOU? I want them to remember me as someone who loved to play volleyball.
WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED ABOUT TEAMWORK OVER THE YEARS? I have learned to put aside any differences I might have with a teammate to the side so that it doesn’t affect the game. I have been on many different teams and played with lots of different people and there is always someone who you might not get along with.
WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED ABOUT YOUR OWN ENDURANCE? I have never been a “natural athlete” but by working hard on and off the court I have proven to myself that I can do and achieve so much more than I thought.
WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE OR ENCOURAGEMENT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SHARE WITH YOUNGER ATHLETES? You don’t have to be good at it right from the start, I learned that the hard way. If it’s something you really want and you put effort into it on and off the court you will progress in your sport. Even if you never become a professional athlete or you don’t make the team you try out for that doesn’t mean it’s the end.