However, Murphy has yet to reach the pinnacle of her potential.
"She's capable of playing at even a higher level because she has a
tremendous amount of talent," Newport Coach Bill Barnett said of the
left-handed two-meter player. "With her talent, she should never be
satisfied because she is such a tremendous talent. She has to continue to
Murphy agreed with her coach.
"He has a lot of confidence in me," Murphy said. "During practice, he
always tries to push me to my fullest potential. He likes to push me. He
knows what I'm capable of doing and so do I. With the way I'm going now,
I think I haven't peaked yet."
Murphy, the Daily Pilot Athlete of the Week, appeared to be pushing
herself to her limits last week, displaying an immense amount of
intensity. She scored two goals and handed out an assist to help the
visiting Sailors defeat previously unbeaten El Toro, 10-4, Jan. 4. She
also scored three goals in an 8-6 win at Carlsbad.
"Oh, that felt really good," Murphy said of the win over El Toro that
avenged a 7-6 loss in five overtime periods to the Chargers in a CIF
Southern Section Division I quarterfinal. "(The win) felt good,
especially because of last year. I tipped the ball for a goal for them
(in the fourth overtime period). I blamed myself last year. I took it
pretty hard. But my teammates helped me realize it wasn't my fault. I
wanted to prove to (El Toro) that we are the better team. I don't think
they were ready for how much we wanted it."
Murphy's left-handed skills kept the Chargers off balance throughout
the game. Yet it was her intensity that Barnett was most impressed with.
"She has really picked up her game in the last couple of weeks,"
Barnett said. "Just the overall intensity of her play has improved. She's
shooting the ball real well and she's playing exceptionally well in
Murphy is also aware that she has improved. She battled through a
shoulder injury last year and during the offseason she increased her
strength by maintaining a busy schedule. Aside from training and playing
water polo, Murphy became a certified beach lifeguard this summer.
Among the 31 people who were training to become a lifeguard, boys