Myrtle's Gordon a multi-sports standout

MYRTLE • It was a rare sight at the Myrtle High School gym last week: Kinsley Gordon sitting still while the action swirled nearby.

She’d suffered a thumb injury a few days prior during a travel league softball game, so Gordon could not suit up for the Lady Hawks during summer league basketball.

Injury is about the only thing that can slow her down.

The sophomore is stretching the definition of multi-sport athlete. She plays not only for Myrtle’s basketball team, but also its softball team, track and field team, bowling team, and now the new volleyball team.

Oh, and she just made the cheer squad.

Student-athlete

The 15-year-old Gordon does all this – and does it well – while maintaining a 4.0 grade-point average.

“It most definitely keeps me out of trouble,” Gordon said with a smile.

Her parents, Brooke and Robert, keep up as best they can, which is made easier by the fact that they coach her. Brooke is the head softball coach and a volleyball assistant, while Robert is the head volleyball coach.

Kinsley’s brother Paxton is a senior for Myrtle’s baseball team, and he also plays summer ball, so the Gordons are always on the move.

“It’s kind of chaotic,” Brooke said. “My light, gas and water got cut off this year for the first time ever because I forgot to pay it.”

“It’s something every night of the week,” Robert said. “There’s usually no breaks, especially during the summer.”

Kinsley’s best sport is softball. She’s coming off a monster season for Myrtle: a .595 batting average with six home runs, 34 RBIs and 30 stolen bases while playing catcher.

She plays for a travel team out of Germantown, Tennessee, during the summer. The Red Devils won the USA/ASA 14U Class A National Championship last year.

In basketball, Gordon is Myrtle’s point guard and last season averaged 17 points, 6 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 3.8 steals per game – all of which led the team.

She also won a Class 1A state title in discus, a year after winning gold in the triple jump.

Gordon has had to drop some of her activities because of scheduling conflicts, but keeping her in one place is next to impossible.

“When we’re at home she’s always asking, ‘Where are we going? Can I go do this?’ She never slows down,” said Brooke, who added that she is concerned with her daughter pushing her body too hard.

Kinsley is slightly built, but work in the weight room has added more punch to her grit, by which she comes naturally. Robert’s uniform stayed dirty when he played baseball at New Albany, and Kinsley is of the same mentality.

“I’ve never seen her go half-speed,” Robert said.

And Kinsley is constantly working to improve her game, no matter the sport. She wants a stronger arm for softball and a more consistent outside shot for basketball.

“Any sport I can always improve in, and that’s just a matter of how much work I put into it,” Kinsley said. “I plan on working really hard this offseason, because next year will be my big year for recruiting.”

SEC softball programs are already looking at her, and that’s the sport she’ll focus on in college. It’s Kinsley’s first love.

“That was my sport,” she said, “because it didn’t matter how big I was, how small I was, how slow, how fast. I could always be as good as I wanted to be.”

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