The Lakeland Mirror

Shot blocking as an art form

Lakeland University

Lakeland University

Dezmen Morse, Sports Editor

Junior Maddy Doll, center for the Lakeland University women’s basketball team, has recently broken the all-time record for blocks in Lakeland University’s history.

The question is: how does she do it?

Doll has solid height for a basketball player as she is six feet and one inch tall, but she is far from a giant to say the least. Her wingspan, though, is six feet and four inches long, which is an entire foot longer than the average arm span for women. Doll’s long arms make up her 17-inch vertical.

I had the pleasure of sitting down and talking with Doll. I am actually glad we sat down to talk because she is every inch of her height.

When I asked Doll about her vertical jump, she kind of chuckled before revealing the number. Then as we talked more and more, I realized that it is not always just about physical talent, but just simply being good at something without having insanely rare physical attributes.

Doll seems to find herself in the right position at the right time, which is amazing because in all four years of high school her team played man to man defense, making it harder to get blocks. She seamlessly transitioned to Lakeland’s zone defense, allowing her to stay near the pain and protect the rim, which is exactly what she does.

When I asked Doll what goes through her head before making a block, she replied, “I just follow my defensive rotations and when someone attempts a shot I keep my arms straight up and feet on the ground so I do not commit a foul.”

Doll’s strategy for blocking shots eliminates her weakness of not being able to jump very high and keeps her out of foul trouble, allowing her to continue to guard the lane.

There is nothing flashy about Doll. She is just a hard worker on the court who has crafted herself for the art of shot blocking.

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Shot blocking as an art form