By Rubin E. Grant
Addison Tierney didn’t plan on following in her mother’s footsteps. It just turned out that way.
When she was a little girl, Tierney tried several activities, including dance and softball. One day her mother, Ashley Tierney, asked her if she wanted to try soccer, and Addison said sure.
Little did Addison Tierney know that would put her on the same path her mother had taken.
Ashley Tierney played soccer at Mountain Brook High School and at Rhodes College in Memphis. Now Addison Tierney will be headed to Rhodes in the fall after playing soccer for Mountain Brook.
“I’m following in her footsteps,” Addison Tierney said. “She influenced me a little bit, but in a good way. I made my own decision to go to Rhodes. My dad, Brian, also went to Rhodes. They were both excited when I told them.
“I chose Rhodes because it is the perfect balance of athletics, academics and being able to have a social life. I feel I can balance everything well and because it is a smaller school with a great student-to-teacher ratio, if I ever need any help, there will be a lot of people willing to help me.
“I also love the city of Memphis, and this was definitely a big factor in my decision, too.”
Tierney is an exceptional student with a 4.18 grade-point average. She also made 32 on the ACT. She hasn’t decided on her major, but she won’t become a certified public accountant, like her mom.
“I’m thinking pre-med,” Tierney said. “Bio-chemistry could be a good fit. I eventually want to become a doctor, perhaps a pediatrician. My dad is an emergency medicine doctor.”
This spring, Addison Tierney, a center back, was having a standout season for the Spartans before it was cut short because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Mountain Brook had a 7-2-2 record when the season was halted.
It was a double blow for Tierney because, not only did her senior season end abruptly, but she also didn’t get to play a full season with younger sister Breese, who was a freshman on the team. It was the first time the sisters had been teammates.
“We have both played club soccer our whole life, but we’d never been teammates because of the age difference,” Addison Tierney said. “I was the one most disappointed definitely when the season ended. It was my senior season and it was cut short. Everybody on the team was sad.”
Players of the Year, All-Star
Despite the shortened season, the Birmingham Metro Soccer Coaches Association named Tierney and Hewitt-Trussville’s Jordan Lynn players of the year in the all-senior A Division.
“I was so excited,” Tierney said. “It was definitely a surprise. We played only four or five big games. My mom told me she had a surprise for me and she’s the one who told me. They had told her first.”
Tierney also was named All-State by the coaches association.
“She had a remarkable senior year, being named co-Birmingham Metro Player of the Year,” Mountain Brook girls soccer coach Adam Johnson said. “We nominate our players and she was voted on by all the other Birmingham area coaches. It’s not a specific category but awarded to who receives the most votes. That speaks well of not just her playing ability, but a lot of coaches know who she is off the field as well as on.
“The United Soccer National Association, which is separate, named her to the first team All-State. It’s chosen by coaches in the entire state. To make first team in that is remarkable.”
Tierney played in the Alabama High School Athletic Association North-South All-Star game in 2019, and this year she was voted one of Mountain Brook’s team captains.
She is a versatile player but found her niche as a defender during her high school career.
“When I was younger, I didn’t have a solidified position,” she said. “I played everywhere. I was a floater. When I was in the eighth grade, the coach talked to me about where I should play and I ended up at center back.
“I think it helped me as a defender, playing other positions. I have a deeper understanding of the game and more field awareness.”
Johnson raves about Tierney’s talent and skill level.
“She’s extremely consistent,” Johnson said. “You can rely on her. In the games when we were not playing a top opponent, she still maintained the same level of play. It doesn’t matter the level of competition. She approaches practice with an open mindset. She’s very coachable.
“Her mechanics, fundamentals and technique are polished and consistent. She does all the simple stuff and has a high degree of accuracy with where she’s going with the ball. In a bit of serendipity, she scored our first goal of the season this year.”
Johnson likes that Tierney will play college soccer at her mom’s alma mater.
“It’s neat to see her carry on the legacy,” he said.