HANCEVILLE, Ala. – Hanceville High School’s Lane Horton Gymnasium was packed with family, friends, teammates, classmates, coaches and more Monday to celebrate the achievements of another standout athlete. This time it was Cassidy Campbell taking the next step in her academic and athletic career as she signed a basketball scholarship to play for the Huntingdon Hawks and Head Coach Paige Huff.
Campbell racked up over 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in her Lady Bulldogs career, but Hanceville Head Coach Tim Bellmon didn’t hesitate when asked what stands out the most about Cassidy on the court.
“I’ve said several times that she’s probably been one of the best leaders I’ve coached in the 27 or 28 years I’ve been doing this. Also, her ability to adapt I think is what’s going to make her a much better college basketball player,” Bellmon said. “Her ability to pick things up and understand them and learn them. We had a lot of young girls playing around here this year, so she had to take on a bigger role and she flourished in that role. That’s the reason we’re here today and why she has an opportunity to play at the next level.”
Bellmon believes he’s seen Campbell establish a new standard in the Lady Bulldogs’ program going forward after the leadership, effort and production she displayed in her playing career.
“I think that she has set a standard for the younger girls. Our mindset changed from the middle of the season to the end of the season to now,” Bellmon said. “Now we understand what we have to do to be successful and she’s been a big part of that.”
Cassidy felt very comfortable with the players and coaches when she got the chance to visit Huntingdon and was drawn to the welcoming atmosphere of the program.
“When I went there, they were just very welcoming. Their players were very welcoming, their coaches were welcoming, and it really felt like home away from home. It didn’t feel different from being here around people I already knew,” Campbell said. “Coach (Tim) Bellmon is the one that actually helped me get in contact with them and they seemed like they really wanted me, and it just really made me feel like that’s where I wanted to go. They stood out from some of the other places I visited because they seemed really committed and serious about wanting me and caring about me on a personal level so that was one of the big reasons.”
Campbell’s playing style on the court has been defined by her intensity and leadership for the past several years and Cassidy says that’s the only way she knows how to do it.
“Honestly, I don’t know any other way to play, that’s just how I am. It’s not always something that I’m intentionally aware of I guess but it’s really important to me because someone has to be that person. Not just for your own success but for your team’s success,” Campbell said. “It’s nice to know that your teammates are looking up to you and they’ll do what you do so if you do the right things, they’ll do the right things.”
Cassidy has lived her entire life in Hanceville and loves the people she’s grown up with in her community but she’s excited for the chance to build new relationships in a new place.
“I don’t know anything other than Hanceville so I’m definitely going to miss it. I’ve been here my whole life and the relationships I have with people here are ones that I’ve built over the last 18 years that I’ve been here. I’m really going to miss Coach Bellmon and Coach Josh because if I didn’t have them then I wouldn’t have gotten to the next level,” Campbell said. “I’m definitely going to miss the girls and miss coach and I’m just going to miss this school in general and just having that comfortable feeling of being here. But that’s another reason I’m looking forward to being there because I think I can have that with them too so I’m looking forward to making new relationships with them.”
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