Charlie Obaugh RV & Outdoor Student Athlete of the Week: Jaidyn McClung

Published: Nov. 11, 2022 at 12:42 AM EST
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - Jaidyn McClung discovered her love of books in seventh grade, when she read The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins.

As a senior, McClung is a library assistant, where she promotes an inclusive space for reading at Luray High School.

“I’m close with the librarian,” said McClung. “She’s read almost every book in the library and tells me which ones are good. It’s a place where I can relax.”

When McClung is not reading books, she is rewriting record books on the court. In 2021, she helped lead the girls basketball team to its first state championship in program history. McClung is also a standout athlete on the track, and this weekend, her volleyball team is competing in the state tournament. Over the past four years, McClung has earned All-State honors in all three sports.

“She’s made herself into a great basketball player,” said Luray head basketball coach Joe Lucas. “When she was young, she was a great athlete who was using her athletic ability to be a good player. She has put in the time to become very good.”

This spring, McClung will be graduating with her associates degree. After high school, she plans to earn her masters degree while training to be a game warden, a physical and often dangerous role that is traditionally held by men.

“As an athlete, I’m strong and fit,” said McClung. “Sports help me to make smart choices and learn that I’m my own protection.”

Game warden candidates are required to complete rigorous academy training, and McClung is determined to bring her athletic experience to the next chapter of her life.

“It’s extremely hard to get through academy training,” she added. “Making it through will be proving a point that women can do it too.”

This winter, McClung and the Bulldogs will be going for their fourth consecutive Region 2B Championship along with a second state basketball title.

“She’s earned her place in our program... now it’s her program,” said Lucas. “She can lead us and help us continue to be successful.”