From a Cyclone to a Senator… Johnson inks with Walters State to continue softball career

Published 1:10 am Friday, November 15, 2019

BY IVAN SANDERS
STAR SPORTS EDITOR
ivan.sanders@elizabethton.com
From the time that Maggie Johnson stepped onto a softball diamond as a young girl, she had always carried a dream of one day playing college softball.
On Wednesday afternoon in the Elizabethton Commons Area, Johnson was joined by her Lady Cyclone teammates and a host of family and friends as she put her signature on a National Letter of Intent to play down the road in Morristown for Walters State Community College as a Lady Senator where she rejoins former teammate Lauren Brickey.
“I am pretty excited. It’s just like reality in the first big decision that I have made,” said Johnson just before signing her official paperwork.”Lauren Brickey goes there so she talked me up to the coaches and she told me how great a program it was.
“She also talked about how good the girls were and the school was so I decided that was the place for me.”
Johnson is just one of many Lady Cyclones who have had the opportunity to extend their playing careers and Johnson was thankful for Lady Cyclone head coach Kenneth Hardin who works diligently to help his team reach the goals they set for themselves.
“I definitely think that Coach Hardin puts in a lot of work with all the girls,” Johnson commented. “Anytime you want to come and hit, he will come to let you hit and anything you need he will do it for you and that goes along with me getting this opportunity.
“He contacted the coaches at Walters State and told them that I wanted to come and tryout and they¬†said to bring me down. He did everything and all I had to do was go down there and try out. They were interested so they called him back and so here we are.
“Coach Hardin pushes all his girls to go all the way.”
Coming into her final year as a Lady Cyclone, Johnson along with her team has some goals they would like to achieve when the new season begins in early spring.
“I think to definitely go farther than last year and do better than last season. We kind of had some bumpy roads but this year I think we will be better,” added Johnson. “Last year I wasn’t the leader but this year it really falls on me as a senior to take leadership.”
Hardin was asked what the Lady Senators were getting in a player like Johnson.
“They are getting one of the hardest workers that they have ever had. Lauren (Brickey) is already down there and waiting for her because Lauren is going to redshirt,” stated Hardin.
“He is going to get two great practice players, great game players, and very good students as well. He is getting a top-notched kid in Maggie. he stole one from here.”
Hardin highlighted the qualities that make Johnson a standout softball player.
“Her abilities and attitude,” stated Hardin. “She is a very versatile player who can play multiple positions. She has great speed and plays great defense and like I said she loves to practice and loves to work.
“That’s a bonus for any program to get a kid like that. She is a leader that leads by example and that is absolutely the best leader you can have.
“She is there every minute and she is there extra,” continued Hardin. “I told all the other kids that when we got beat last year, she was at the building two days after hitting again.
“She knows what it takes. When she came in as a freshman, we didn’t know that she would work herself into this position but she has turned into a really good player.”

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