Sports Spotlight: Ray Hall
BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - If you’ve followed sports in Bismarck anytime since the mid-90s, you’ve probably cheered for athletes whose performance has been influenced by Ray Hall.
Hall is a full-time professor at the University of Mary, but he spends his free time supporting teams when they need him the most.
Hall has lived a life filled with serving others.
“Just seeing that success when they do come forward and you are able to help them out, that’s the satisfaction so they can compete at their full potential also,” said Hall.
He has spent decades as an athletic trainer. Just like most who work in sports, Hall played sports well into college.
“Well, I initially wanted to follow my sports dream, you know, everybody is going to make it to the NFL or MLB. After my sophomore year, I realized I wasn’t going to make it to the big leagues, I decided education was where I needed to go, so I transferred to NDSU and that’s where I graduated,” said Hall.
After graduating and moving away, Hall’s North Dakota roots brought him back. He was the trainer for the Dakota Wizards in their championship years, began volunteering at sporting events where he resides in Center, and now, he’s become an integral part of the UMary Hockey program.
“You know, it doesn’t matter if he’s volunteering up in Center for his high school’s kid’s games, or he’s doing our games, or filling in somewhere else, I think he really cares. More things get spilled in the athletic training room, so he has a pretty good understanding of what’s happening with our team,” said Dan Huntley, UMary Hockey head coach.
Hockey was one of the few sports he hadn’t worked with before starting with the team six years ago.
“Once he became invested, and he said, ‘Hey, this is my program.’ We’re not sharing somebody else, we’re not sharing multiple athletic trainers, doing those things, you get a lot more out of somebody. Now you know we’re going to get him,” said Huntley.
The Marauders got a man who grew up in Berthold and knows not everyone in sports gets the same coverage when it comes to safety.
“I’ve got a little soft spot in my heart for the small town. Growing up there, being a part of that, I know what it’s like, kind of the struggles,” said Hall.
Despite years of service, Hall prefers it when he can fly under the radar.
“If people don’t know who I am, that’s a good thing. Usually, that means the athletes are healthy and safe, and the stories that you hear from the guys you get to know, all that stuff is a big part of why it’s been a pleasure to work with, and I’m glad I’ve had the opportunity to work with some of those teams,” Hall.
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