STARS ALIGN FOR GO-GETTER
While half of the team is overseas battling it out for the 2019 Netball World Cup title, things over at camp Lightning don’t seem to be slowing down.
I speak with Maddy Mcauliffe fresh off the ropes course at the Big Pineapple Treetop Challenge, where her and fellow teammate Laura Scherian just took on the black run.
“Shezzy and I tried to race each other, I’m actually exhausted,” Maddy said.
“I think one of the guys said it was the hardest course in Australia. It was very difficult, you definitely have to be strong and have a lot of upper body strength.”
While you’re used to seeing Maddy front and centre on the netball court, outside of the sporting arena she’s in the back row, working hard as the quiet achiever.
The 24-year-old has just completed a double degree, set to graduate with a Bachelor of Business and Bachelor of Law (Honours) in just a few short weeks.
If that’s not enough, the Lightning midcourter has also recently purchased her very own home in Maroochydore, talk about
kicking goals or should I say, shooting goals.
Maddy was part of the inaugural
Sunshine Coast Lightning team and since day one, she has brought this work ethic and diligence to her responsibilities within the club. Each year, the centre and wing defence player continues to revolutionise her game, constantly pushing the boundaries and inspiring those around her.
As a social butterfly among the club, Maddy spends a lot of her downtime hanging out with fellow teammates on post-training brunches, picnics or at the beach.
“I love riding my bike to go get coffee or to meet up with the girls. Now that
I’ve finished uni and don’t have to study anymore, I’ve been riding my bike to Mooloolaba Beach and sitting there and reading my book,” Maddy said.
“We’ve been doing a lot of Sunday picnics at Alexandra Headland Hill. It’s really beautiful because the sun sets over the hill and we can watch it go down. It’s just a really nice way to start the week.”
Inspired to make the most of her beachside lifestyle, Maddy is often out exploring the region’s natural environment, whether that be up in the hinterland in search of waterfalls or down on the seaside beach hopping. Now settling into her third season playing for Lighting, Maddy said there’s no place she’d rather be.
“I’ve bought a house up here, so I’m well and truly a Sunshine Coaster now,”
“My boyfriend has just moved up too which is really nice, it makes it feel even more like home.”
Working a part-time job in Compliance and Risk Management at the University of the Sunshine Coast, having studied herself and also training daily at the USC Stadium, Maddy spends a lot of time on campus.
However, the routine never becomes mundane because the supportive culture at the Lightning makes rocking up each day totally worth it.
“What’s really nice at Lightning is the whole club from players to commercial and performance coaching always get along. We are closer than most clubs as an organisation, so for us, it really is like a family,” Maddy said.
“Laura has come back from New Zealand,
Phumza and Peace have moved over from another country, Anni has moved over from Perth which may as well be another country. So, you do become each other’s family away from home.
“When you’ve got that friendship and that respect off court it just enables you to communicate better on court. We can also be more honest with our feedback because we all know each other on a deeper level.”
STEPH wood, Maddy MCAULIFFE, cara KOENEN and karla MOSTERT.