Making Goals, Shooting Baskets




The jersey is dark blue, the kind that shines perfectly against humming old gym lights and momma’s camera flash. The blue blur zooms by the outskirts of the dingy gym where daddies holler as if they’re coaching the NBA Finals instead of “Upward A” verses “Upward B.” Ignoring the blinding flashes and shouts surrounding her, a little pigtailed player reaches for the ball and sets up just like she’s seen on TV. Her little knees bend to support her arms as she sends the ball up, flying towards the goal. She remains focused, tongue stuck out in a smile as it falls through the hoop, creating the most beautiful disruption in the taunt white net. 

This first basket was a career-changing moment for four-year-old Abbie Talton who loved anything and everything sports. This fact remained apparent through her extensive uniform collection, trophies, and eighth birthday cake, which was basketball, softball, and soccer themed. However, her passion for basketball carried the lead, earning her a spot on the Springville High School varsity team in the seventh grade.  

It was her time on this team that inspired her at the beginning of her ninth-grade season to aim for 1,000 points before her high school career ended. Four years later she achieved this goal in an area game against Moody. After the game Abbie was recognized for her achievement out on the court by her coach where she was presented with balloons and other memorabilia. This moment was well deserved and very needed, considering Abbie’s reserved and quiet personality will not allow her to brag or boast of her personal successes. Abbie’s friend and member of the cheer squad Molly Graben claimed that Abbie is so humble she would never have known about the 1,000 points had everyone not been talking about it. 

Scoring her 1000th career point is not the only reward Abbie has received and kept on the down low. She has been selected as All-County MVP for the last two years, an honor her teammates feel was undeniably well-deserved, along with being chosen for the All-County Tournament team in 2018, the All-Area team in 2019 and 2020, and the All-Area Tournament team since 2018. 

Students and classmates of Abbie’s are likely unaware of these incredible feats. This phenomenon can be best described by her mother who stated in a recent birthday post for Abbie that “some have never heard her say a word.” However, her silent exterior is striped away in the presence of her family and teammates. The laughter of her younger sister and the squeak of her shoes against the waxy gym floor are things that signal a safe place where Abbie can joke and enjoy jokes without reservation.  

When she’s on the court, ball in hand, the stress of school, clubs, and leadership become a distant hum, drowned out by the rhythmic dribbling of the ball and the roar of the student section. She has her eye on the prize, but not as many athletes today do where they see the ball, the basket and nothing else. Abbie sees the court as a whole; she sees the way she can help her teammates reach their goals.  

Teammate and friend Makalyn Kyser, who assisted Abbie’s 1,000-point shot, stated that Abbie is one of the most selfless basketball players she’s encountered. “She never goes into a game thinking of herself; she always wants the team to succeed.” 

Abbie fell in love with basketball’s fast-paced environment and the way the energy builds and buzzes in the gym during rivalry games, but most importantly she loves being on a team. Knowing there will be players like Makalyn to assist her and people for her to assist in return means everything to her. This uncommon outlook on teamwork is hard to find these days and is likely the reason Abbie has had such unparalleled success.  

Basketball is not the only place Abbie gets to apply her natural talent for teamwork. She also plays for the varsity soccer team and is involved in multiple clubs including Beta Club, Students Against Destructive Decisions, Mu Alpha Theta, Family Career and Community Leaders of America, and Student Council. She also takes multiple advanced placement classes. It’s safe to say Abbie’s plate is piled high and balanced in one hand. Because of this, Abbie is incredibly thankful for her family who never miss a game and are always prepared to help her with or though anything.  

Abbie’s friends off the court are also eager to plan hangouts where she cracks jokes in her famous Talton style. Her friend Ella Andrews dies laughing at her stoic manner of delivering punchlines and quick witty comebacks. “Sometimes you can’t tell if she joking or not,” Ella shared. “She has really good comebacks, but she’s really serious about it, which makes it ten times funnier.”  

Whether she’s showing out on the court, enjoying quality time with family, or making friends laugh, Abbie Talton is, as described by those who know her best, a loyal, dependable, selfless, and always-determined player and friend. And she’s always been this way. From passing AP exams to making the varsity team or scoring 1,000 points, when Abbie sets a goal for herself, never count her out. 

Her mindset has always been the same. The girl who scored her first basket fourteen years ago is the same one who just scored her 1,000th high school career point. Only now instead of a blur of blue speeding past the crowd, it’s the familiar, and iconic, purple and gold of the SHS Varsity Lady Tigers. She feels the buzz of the crowd, the familiar weight of the ball in her hand.  There’s an open shot, and she takes it. Abbie’s eyes remain unwaveringly on the ball, completely focused on her goal.