MURFREESBORO – Ashlynd Wilkerson is considering adding softball to her collection of sports played this year.
If she plays softball like she has the three sports she currently plays at Middle Tennessee Christian School, the junior should make an immediate impact.
In an age when more and more athletes decide to specialize in one sport, Wilkerson is an exception. Not only does she already play three sports — not including softball — but she plays all three at a high level.
“I just think I’ve been blessed by God for having this athletic ability,” Wilkerson said. “If I have this athletic ability, I might as well try it out.”
• She currently averages 18 points a game, 3.0 rebounds a game and 3.0 steals a game for the MTCS girls basketball team. The Lady Cougars (17-2) are ranked seventh in the Associated Press’ Class A statewide poll. Wilkerson became the school’s 10th girl to reach the 1,000-point mark for her career earlier this season.
• Wilkerson scored a team-high 17 goals for the MTCS girls soccer team this season. She is the school’s all-time leading scorer with 46 career goals.
“Ashlynd’s speed and her growing skill level as a striker has made her a constant threat in every game we play,” MTCS girls soccer coach Lawrence Goodwyn said.
• She has reached the TSSAA Class A/AA state track and field meet the past two years, placing in the top eight in both the discus and shot put her freshman year, and placing in the discus her sophomore season.
“She started out as a sprinter as a freshman before a troublesome hamstring moved her to the throws,” MTCS track and field coach Owen Barker said. “Her athleticism is a great asset as a thrower. Successful throwers rely on explosive movement and balance which she has both.
“Ashlynd is deceptively strong for her size. The size discrepancy is really evident looking at pictures of her on the medal stand at the state meet.”
Oh, and if that wasn’t enough, she was also part of her school’s homecoming court this past week.
“I stay busy,” Wilkerson said. “But I think it’s fun going to different sports and trying out different things. But, I stay busy.”
She also juggles AAU basketball during the spring.
But basketball is her first love, and likely her college future. She already has a college offer from Austin Peay.
“I’ve always loved basketball,” Wilkerson said. “I’ve played since third grade. I’m trying to go to college for it.”
MTCS girls basketball coach Lynn Burkey said Wilkerson’s athletic ability allows her to excel in each sport she plays.
“She’s a serious athlete, but she also has a great personality, and does great in the classroom,” Burkey said. “She’s got a lot going for her.
“When you are an athlete, you can pick up a golf club, or pick up a bat. Or you can run some sprints. She throws the shot. She’s a little bitty kid. You’d never believe it the way she throws it. She’s just an athlete.”
Contact Tom Kreager at 615-278-5168 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @Kreager.
Junior Ashlynd Wilkerson is a three-sport standout athlete at Middle Tennessee Christian School. Below are a portion of her athletic achievements.
Basketball: One of 10 from MTCS to reach 1,000-point mark for her career. She averages 18 points a game this season.
Girls soccer:School’s all-time leading scorer with 46 career goals scored. She scored 17 this past season.
Track and field: Two-time Class A/AA state qualifier in discus, and reached in shot put her freshman year.
(All games at 6 p.m.)
Blackman at Stewarts Creek
La Vergne at Riverdale
Smyrna at Siegel*
Eagleville at Forrest
DeKalb Co. at Cannon Co.
Central Magnet at York Institute
*WGNS (1450-AM, 100.5-FM, 101.9-FM)