Every week, we here at 13WMAZ turn our spotlight on a central Georgia student-athlete who excels on and off their field of play. This week our Athlete of the Week is Autumn Ring, a well-decorated senior basketball and softball standout from Houston County High School.
Ring is finishing her career as a stand-up scholar athlete for Houston County. In the fall she rounds the bases as a shortstop and outfielder who hit for .437 on the region championship softball team. But in the winter she's more at home with the sport she says she loves best.
"I would definitely have to say basketball (is my favorite sport) because I grew up doing it and that's something my dad did and I just got it from him," Ring said.
And her second year coach is grateful to have her on the floor.
"We're pretty much on the same page with our thinking," Houston Co. Lady Bears head coach Daniell Johnson said. "She knows what plays to call. She's going to go the extra mile all the time. When she plays she goes 100% all the time, always above and beyond every time. That's something you can't coach."
Ring runs the floor with the best of them. As one of four seniors, she helped lead the team to history this season by winning the first ever playoff game in school history.
"Oh, it was amazing to feel that way," Ring said. "Nobody would have ever thought that we could have made it. We're the only ones that believed in ourselves, but that's all that matters, and we just hope we can make it as far as we can."
Ring sports a 4.0 GPA along with a 10 points per game average, not bad at all for one of the program's top leaders.
"If we're on the way to the game, most of the time they are doing their homework," Johnson said. " So grades and stuff, that's never an issue. That's one thing that makes my life easy."
"Grades are important because that's what's going to get you to school," Ring said. "You can't always rely on sports, so, you've got to get your classwork done and just do your work and get those tests done."
So as Autumn's high school nears the end. she offers this advice for those across central Georgia who will follow in her footsteps.
" It's going to get hard, but keep working and never take anything for granted," Ring said. "Because I feel it was just my freshman year. At some points I did take it for granted and now I'm here and I know it's almost over."
Sadly, the Ring and the Houston County Lady Bears saw their season come to an end Thursday night with a 68-23 loss to Douglas Co. on the road in the Sweet 16. Ring is hoping to play basketball in college and she plans to visit schools soon.