Dexter soccer star finds the right fit in Ball State University

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Acadia Murphy at center. photo by Mike Williamson

In signing to play college soccer at Ball State University, Acadia Murphy of Dexter High School believes she’s found the perfect school and team for her.

Murphy said she was super excited to finally sign and make it official with BSU. Some of the biggest reasons she picked this university are the coaches, who she describes as all being really nice and made the recruiting process a lot easier, and her love for their campus, which she says is a good distance from home without being too far away.

She did say it was a tough choice because there's a lot to think about when picking a school.

But as she got know the team better, the pick became obvious.

“I love how cool all of the players are and how tight the team is,” she said in giving her reasoning. “I also love their style of play. I was really looking for a program that would fit me as a player and as a person, and I think Ball State is gonna be a great fit.”

Murphy has played both club soccer and at DHS, but she didn’t begin high school play until her junior year this past season last spring. However, in that one year, she grew and learned a lot.

“Unfortunately I only have one year of high school soccer under my belt because I didn't play high school soccer my freshman or sophomore year,” she said. “However, from that one year, the biggest thing that stood out to me was the competition level. One of the things you hear about high school sports compared to club sports is that the competitiveness isn't always there. I experienced the opposite.”

She said everyone was there and ready to play and compete every day.

Another thing that stood out to her was the team dynamic.

“We weren't all best friends going into the season and we didn't all know each other that well,” she said looking back. “In the end, we all had each other backs on the field and were all there for the team. This stood out for me because this isn't something I've experienced in my time playing club soccer. With club, I tended to play with the same players for several years with minimal change. In high school soccer, the transition from losing seniors and gaining freshman and the change from JV to Varsity there's lots of change in the people you play with. At Dexter, I found that everyone was very welcoming to everyone whether it was JV or Varsity.”

Last season, she was selected as a Second Team Division 2 All-State 2021 and First Team All-SEC White. Her senior season will be this upcoming spring.

A big part of her growth as a player and person is due to some important support and help she’s received over the years, starting with her faith.

“First and foremost has to be God,” she said of who she thanks for helping her accomplish this goal. “I've been through a lot of highs and many, many lows in my soccer career, but he's had a plan for me through it all.”

Next has to be her parents.

“I can be a pain in the ass when it comes to sports and they've supported me through it all,” she said. “My dad was the one to really push me to improve and push myself. Then my mom was the one that was always there to remind me that it's Okay to take breaks and was always there to talk. They were the perfect pair for me.”

Signing day with her parents on hand. photo courtesy of Dexter Athletics

Lastly, she said another big part of her development is the help she’s received from her coaches over all of these years.

With their help and support, she set a goal to get better and better through hard work and dedication.

It’s paying off for her.

“Without a doubt my work has paid off,” she said. “I've been playing soccer for 10 years now and I think everything I've done has landed me right where I need to be. I truly believe I have found the school that fits me from an athletic, academic, and social perspective. I wouldn't change a thing looking back and I can't wait to continue working to succeed at the next level.”

photo by Mike Williamson
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