An inside look on Nora Stufft’s basketball journey

Mara Statie, Staff Writer

Sophomore Nora Stufft began playing basketball when she was in middle school, starting a little later than the rest of her peers who grew up playing the sport in elementary school or even earlier. This was because her athletic career actually started with ice hockey. However, after realizing hockey was not the right fit for her due to injury and health concerns, she switched over to basketball, a much less physically-demanding sport that she has thrived in ever since. 

Stufft leaps up and scores a basket for her team over two defenders. (Photo courtesy of Nora Stufft)

Stufft was a member of Meridian’s girls JV basketball team in her freshman year. She notes that the JV team provided lots of the necessary preparation she needed to eventually join the varsity team the following year. She highlights the help of her “coach’s enthusiasm” as well as the “awesome team chemistry” in developing her skills and making her a better player in general. 

Basketball is a competitive sport that requires hours and hours of practice each day. In addition to playing for Meridian’s basketball team, Stufft plays AAU (Amateure Athletic Union) as a way to further her skills. This travel league has allowed Stufft to hone in on the abilities she currently excels in, as well as drill the parts of her game that are not up to par. 

Even with all the preparation Stufft puts in, every athlete has their fair share of inevitable struggles. For Stufft, height was always an obstacle on the basketball court. However, by becoming a better shooter from the three-point line and working on her speed and quickness, Stufft was able to overcome this hurdle and dominate the sport. 

This is Stufft’s first year on the Varsity basketball team, and she loves the opportunity to play with her older teammates. (Photo courtesy of Nora Stufft)

Height is not the only challenge Stufft faces; time management has also affected Stufft. As a high school student with loads of responsibilities, it can definitely be tricky for student athletes to find a balance between academics and extracurriculars. Stufft has found a solution by creating an organized schedule each day of the week. Part of her routine includes waking up early in the morning to get a good basketball workout in before school and beginning her homework as soon as she gets home from her high school practice.

This year, Stufft is extremely excited about working alongside the upperclassmen and committed players that she has looked up to the past few years. These players have been “super inspirational” for Stufft and have motivated her to flourish in all aspects of basketball. She also aspires to play basketball in college in the near future as well. 

Stufft strongly encourages others to show support for the girls basketball team. “Attend our games this year because we have a great team this year and need [your] support,” Stufft concludes.