Full name: Autumn Truesdale
Berkshire School, 2017
Residence: Harlem, NY
Years in Mo’ Motion: 3
Favorite Basketball Player of All-Time: Kevin Durant
Autumn Truesdale, a former Milbank Flyer, was one of the few players outside of Mo’ Motion to take up Mo’s offer to come visit her in August to work on her shooting. Mo shared the same story, same point in her career as Autumn when she said, “If you want to be a serious ballplayer, you learn how to shoot the ball properly.” Most kids and people in general don’t like to hear such harsh criticism. Autumn took everything Mo had to say to heart. She worked on her shot form, her footwork, her handles and she does injury prevention exercises every day. One of the proudest moments for Mo as a teacher was when she asked Autumn to share some words of inspiration with Zach Light. Autumn took out her phone and read a speech she wrote on it just for Zach. It was a long speech and Mo wasn’t sure if Zach wasn’t paying attention. (The trio was in line at a bakery – not on the Mo diet, but Mo was really trying.) Mo said, “Aut, in one sentence or less, can you tell Zach the most important take-away?” She looked Zach straight in the eyes, and said, “I only get one shot at reaching my dream. There’s no looking back.”
Who is your favorite teacher and what is your favorite school subject?
AT: My favorite teacher is my English Teacher and my favorite subject is math and pre-calculus.
On a scale of 1 to 10, how healthy is your diet and what are your food weaknesses?
AT: My diet I would say is like a 7. My food weaknesses are candy and fast food.
How many hours of sleep do you need to feel good as a student-athlete?
AT: For me, it’s six to seven hours. If I don’t get enough sleep, I feel a little groggy and sluggish.
What other fun things to you like to do in your free time?
AT: During my free time I like to hang out with friends, sleep and walk my dog.
When did you know that basketball was your favorite sport?
AT: In seventh or eighth grade.
What is your favorite thing to do on the basketball court?
AT: Play defense.
Who is/was your best teammate, what grade and why?
AT: My best teammate is Samone DeFreese. She is a rising senior at Berkshire. She’s my best teammate because off the court she’s my best friend, and on the court she pushes me to be a better player.
What is your best basketball highlight or moment to date?
AT: Scoring my 1000th point at Berkshire.
What are you short or long term goals as a student athlete?
AT: My long-term goals are to play basketball in college and possibly play for the WNBA.
What do you want to do/be when you grow up?
AT: When I grow up I’d like to be a lawyer or a pediatrician. Five years from now, I might [also] be a coach if I don’t continue to play.
How was your first day at Mo’ Motion like?
AT: My first day at Mo’ Motion was very exciting and fun. It was full of drills and Mo was a great teacher. I’ve learned a lot from her from then until now.
Why did you enjoy most about Mo’ Motion? How is it different? How did it help you?
AT: What I enjoyed the most about Mo’ Motion was that it was different from all the other workouts that I had been to. It really focused on my weaknesses and my strengths. Also, being with a bunch of other girls that I had never known before was also different because at my other workouts I was with the same people I saw everyday. Being with new people was fun.
Describe your experience at Mo’ Motion in five words or less.
AT: My experience in Mo’ Motion in five words: fun, different, exciting, loud and I retained a lot of information so, informative.
If you were to describe Mo to someone, what would you say?
AT: She knows what she’s talking about. She’s a great person. If you want to get better she’s the person to go to. Shooting wise, dribbling wise, she is the total package. Whether it’s basketball-wise or even off the court. She has helped me improve my game so I would recommend her to any aspiring basketball player.
Do you do mental training daily? Before practice?
AT: Mental training before practice or games, yes I do. Before games especially during the AAU circuits I set goals for myself. Like about 2-3 goals for that particular game, or like throughout the whole summer and I would have to complete these goals in the summer. Before games, I stretch almost for 10-15 minutes so I can prevent myself from being injured. I do ACL prevention and I work with my trainer almost everyday to build muscle in my leg or arms so that I don’t get injured throughout the season. We do a lot of upper-body weight lifting. For lower body we do calf raises and exercises for ankle strengthening.
What do you think is the most important skill an athlete can have?
AT: The most important skill an athlete can have is the ability to listen and take criticism very well and to learn from their mistakes.
How would you describe your commitment to basketball?
AT: My commitment to basketball has taken up almost my whole life. 24/7 I am either in the basketball court or outside playing basketball. I always text my coach to ask if he’s in the gym or to see if the gym’s open so I can work out by myself. I’ll even text my trainer to see if I could work out with him. So whether it’s basketball related or non-basketball related, I try to keep myself moving and to get my body stronger so that I am always ready for a game or to make sure that my body is ready for all the contact that I endure.
What is your favorite athletic quote or motto? who said it or from whom did you hear it?
AT: My favorite motto or quote was said by my coach, Coach Smith. He passed away this last year, from Berkshire. He said, “For all the girls’ shoulders we stand on, and we play the great game of basketball.” It’s just something that we all say as a team and it’s just something that stays with me.