By: Rachel Krauss
A fire doubles in size every 30 seconds, becoming impossible to put out. It takes down anything in its path without slowing down. There’s been a flame developing on Hamilton High School’s basketball team that others should be looking out for. Her name is Ashlen Wolfram, and she’s becoming unstoppable.
Wolfram has showed a lot of growth on the court, and others are noticing. “In two years, [Ashlen] has become more assertive and aggressive,” states Bandstra, Hamilton’s Athletic Director. He adds, “If there is a loose ball or rebound to be had, Ashlen is going to get her hands on it.” Because of these improvements, Bandstra believes Wolfram has become a better leader.
Ashlen’s teammates have also noticed the positive changes she has made this year. Bronkhorst stated, “She does really good job rebounding and using her strength and body to make great post moves”. Brittany Driesenga gives credit to, “Ashlen’s hard work ethic.” She explained that Wolfram put in a lot of work before the basketball season even started. Another teammate, Sarah Buresh, also noted Wolfram’s work outside of the season. She added, “[Ashlen] has always been very athletic and talented but this year in basketball you can really see all the hard work she has put in.” Buresh believes that Asheln’s progress has affected their team positively and that, “[Ashlen] should be proud of it.”
While everyone had nothing but positive comments about Wolfram, the most proud seemed to be her coach, VanHekken. He has witnessed that, “[Ashlen] is more comfortable around the rim and knows how to score…she’s quicker defensively…allowing her more steals”. He comments that “she has improved mainly because she chooses to work hard everyday.” He believes that Wolfram “is an example that hard work pays off.”
Although VanHekken is appreciative of her improvement in her work, he’s also proud of who she is as a teammate. He noted that “she wants to see her teammates succeed as well.” VanHekken also acknowledges that her effort has not only improved the team’s performance during games but it also “makes their practices better.”
Ashlen’s development is easy to see through the scores this season. She had scored 8 points against Grandville and an amazing 14 points against Hudsonville. Wolfram doesn’t take all the credit for the great season Hamilton is having. She gives recognition to her team because they, “Work hard everyday…[they] challenge each other…and make each other better”. Wolfram states that in order to improve, “Just try your hardest”. She says if someone wants to advance their skills, “(you have to) keep working on your moves in practice.”
If Wolfram’s teammates follow the path she is taking, soon the single flame will turn into a full fire. Once Hamilton burns through competition, they will be tough to stop.