Hopkins’ hard work pays off with Motlow scholarship

Friday, March 10, 2017
Madison Hopkins (center) is flanked by her parents Heather and Tim as she signs a Letter of Intent to play softball next season at Motlow State Community College. Also present at the signing in the back row from left are, Motlow coaches Lenora Word and Janice Morey, and Cornersville Principal Brent Adcox.
Photos by George "Pap" Warren

Years of hard work have paid off for Cornersville multi-sport athlete Madison Hopkins when the shortstop signed with Motlow State Community College to continue a long line of Lady Dawg softball standouts to make the jump to the college ranks.

Hopkins, a three-year starter for the softball team and basketball standout, decided to become a Lady Buck after a visit to the Lynchburg based college despite interest from several other schools.

"When I visited Motlow in the fall it just felt right," Hopkins said. "I had a few other schools interested, so I knew I still had some major decisions to make, but I knew Motlow was in my top two schools."

Hopkins has played a large part in the Lady Dawgs’ 43 wins over the past three seasons, including a region tournament berth and district tournament runner-up finish in 2016.

"Madison has been a force on the field, anchoring the shortstop position since her freshman year and has always been a consistent hitter," Cornersville coach Eric Crabtree said. "She has worked tirelessly to improve and refine her game. All her hard work has paid off."

Despite claiming a population of just under 1,200 citizens in Cornersville, the Lady Dawgs continuously send players to the next level as evidenced by last season's squad sending Carson Coble (Martin Methodist) and Miranda Cooksey (Motlow State) along with Hopkin's older sister McKenzie, who played two years for the Lady Bucks before finishing her career at Tennessee Wesleyan College.

"Cornersville softball has been blessed for several years with many girls that have gone on to the next level," Crabtree said. "The girls that have went on and played at the next level have inspired a lot of little girls to work hard and do their best and push them to play after high school."

"We have also been blessed with a community, parents, and administration that supports what we as a program are doing to help and push these girls to do the best that they can," Crabtree added.

Madison Hopkins has played shortstop for the Cornersville Lady Bulldogs since her freshman season.

Hopkins was one of those younger girls to grow up watching the Cornersville softball team reach unprecedented heights at the end of the last decade and has embodied the hard work and dedication that reaching the next level demands.

"I believe that the players that get the opportunity to play at the next level are the ones that absolutely love the sport and worked their whole lives to achieve this opportunity," Hopkins, who plans to major in physical therapy, said. "My advice to my underclassmen is that if it's your dream to play at the next level you have to continue to work hard every day. Achieving your dreams isn't easy, but it's possible."

But before Hopkins makes the jump to the college ranks, the Lady Dawgs still have the business of the 2017 season.

The Lady Dawgs finally broke through a historically tough District 11A last season, making the region tournament for the first time in four years after going to the state tournament three out of four seasons from 2008-2011.

And after graduating just three players off of last season's squad the prognosis for a deep tournament run in 2017 is looking great.

"My goal for my senior year to become a leader for my team," Hopkins stated. "We have a very good team this season and I plan to help my teammates in any way I can."

Cornersville opens up the season on March 13 at Culleoka.