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Smoky Valley’s Adrian Hazelwood – Athlete Spotlight Presented By Peoples Bank and Trust

By Chris Cox

Basketball has been a part of Adrian Hazelwood’s life since she was little.

“I’ve played ever since kindergarten in rec league,” she says. “My mom and uncle have always been my coaches.”

Adrian says her uncle, Brad Malm, has been one of her biggest influences on the court.

“He’s taken me to all my trainings,” she says. “He’s taught me everything I know and is my biggest influence in basketball.”

Smoky Valley is a small community and Hazelwood believes the familiarity of playing with a lot of the same girls since elementary school gives the Vikings a bit of an edge on
the court.

“We just know where everyone is going to be and each other’s strengths and weaknesses,” she says. “If I’m going to drive, I know who will be in the corner to kick it out to. It’s the bond we have with each other. We are all best friends with each other outside of sports.”

Hazelwood, who is a junior guard for the Vikings, knows her team lost some key players from last year’s squad that made it to sub-state, but she says that has not tampered down the expectations at Smoky Valley.

“We want to make it to the state tournament this year,” she admits. “We’ve gotten close but never reached our full potential. So that’s something we want to do this year. We are planning on implementing some new offenses this year. We lost some strong seniors, but we are going to be quicker this year and more aggressive, which will help.”

Individually, Adrian doesn’t care how many points she scores, as long as she’s helping her team win.

“I want to be responsible for at least 15 points per game,” she says. “Whether that’s facilitating for my teammates or me scoring. I just want us to get the best shot we can. I’m not worried about the points I score as long as I’m helping my team.”

Outside of basketball, Adrian is a part of the Smoky Valley volleyball team and a member of NHS, KAY club, and pep club. Although she is just a junior, Hazelwood has started thinking about her life after high school. 

“I want to play basketball in college,” she says. “That’s my goal.”

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