Academy Sports+Outdoors Athlete of the Week: Ashley Hudson

“Next point.”

It’s an allusion to the future. Unless, you’re Ashley Hudson. Then, it’s also a sign of the past and present.


Past: Last week, the Lady Warhawk volleyball player helped lead the club to wins over Perry and Houston County – eight kills against the Lady Panthers and six against the Lady Bears – as well as a win over Westlake – seven aces, two kills and two digs.

Present: Hudson has been named the Academy Sports+Outdoors Athlete of the Week.

Needless to say, the future is looking good for the Senior. And speaking of which, that whole “next point” is actually the coaching philosophy/mindset of Head Coach Nicki Miranda.

“(She),” said Hudson, “always says ‘next point’ meaning erase what just happened (the loss of a point) and focus on the next one.

“Volleyball is not like basketball or soccer. In those sports, if you lose the ball you have to work hard at not only getting the ball back, but also scoring. Whereas in volleyball, you just get one pass, one set and one hit, and you can get out of rotation just like that.

“I will never forget what Coach Miranda says when we are tied, ‘Start off at 0-0.’ That is the most important because in other games you can’t really do that.”


Hudson takes a break during a recent match at HOCO

Hudson, who is the daughter of Don and Michelle Hudson, played on the junior varsity team her freshman year, and has played varsity since.

That doesn’t necessarily mean at Veterans, as she said her greatest accomplishment as an athlete has actually been being able to adapt and become part of a team, “no matter where we have moved in my dad’s military career.” In fact, she said Veterans is actually her third high school and, “each time we have moved, I have had to earn my way on teams that have played together since grade school.”

The transition has no doubt been helped by the fact that “dad” is a fan – not only of her but, “(he’s) always loved volleyball and played in the military on squadron teams. He knows what it takes to be an athlete and lead a team.

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“My drive and determination come from my dad’s love of the game. I know he enjoys watching every game I play.”

She added: “In my life, my dad is my hero because he loves me unconditionally all the time and I know that whenever I make a mistake I can look up in the stands and he’ll always be there to tell me what I need to fix.

“He also pushes me to be the person he knows I can be and I strive to be like him daily and succeed the way he has because he has made a very big impact on my life in more ways than he knows.”Southside-Baptist-Church-horizontal

As far as having to “earn my way” on teams, evidence would suggest she’s had no problem doing that – not just at Veterans High but even turning some heads in Georgia. In 2015 she was ranked No. 7 in the state for Volleyball Aces. She earned the Warhawks Award in 2015 and she’s been a member of the Partners Club since 2015. She was also accepted into the BETA club this year.

If there is a second love in the life of a girl who likes “reality” shows (mom and dad, however, believe they’re “staged” and “made up”), whose favorite Disney movie is “Lilo and Stitch”, and her favorite food is lemon chicken with pasta – not to mention, “I also like chocolate milkshakes a lot” – it would be track.

In fact, she was on the varsity team her eighth grade and freshman year when her father was stationed in New Mexico. There, she ran “individual” races and was on a 4X4 team that won state. She was also ranked No. 6 in New Mexico for the high jump at state in 2014.

Past. Present. All success stories. The future … well, bring it on.

“Next point”.


Veterans’ Ashley Hudson