Back on December 29, Syd tore her ACL and had surgery to repair it on Jan. 8. Therapy is underway, the incision is healing and she is working toward getting back on the court.
Once you or a family member go through a specific illness or injury, you become a little more aware of those who have experienced similar circumstances. Adrian Petersen brought some inspiration at the end of the NFL regular season with a spectacular season after coming back from an ACL injury. Sadly, there are many young ladies – even in our area – that have suffered similar injuries.
Just a couple of days ago, the Dayton Daily News ran a story of a young lady from Ohio, Konner Harris, who has recently returned to playing after tearing her ACL. I read it, shared it with Syd and thought it was worth posting. It’s a testament to that young lady’s work to return to playing and good motivation for others who are in a similar situation.
The first game of Konner Harris’ senior girls basketball season was one for the record books.
The Sidney High School guard made a statement by scoring a school-record 49 points against Russia on Nov. 23.
“I had no clue until the end of the game,” Harris said. “Coach had her pep talk, then came back over and gave me a big hug and told me I broke the record. I had no clue.”
While the game gave Harris a permanent place in the Sidney record book, it also represented closure and a new beginning.
Harris earned a new place as one of the leading scorers in the Greater Western Ohio Conference. She has led the league in scoring most of this season, averaging 21.5 points, just ahead of Fair-born’s Alexis Gassion.
It also signaled a full recovery from an ACL tear she suffered during soccer as a junior.
“It was our last scrimmage before the season,” Harris said. “I came down wrong and it all ended there.”
She was expected to miss most of the 2011-12 basketball season.
“She had surgery a week after (the injury) and everyone I talked to, the doctors, they all said it would usually take six months,” Sidney coach Megan Mummey said. “We didn’t think she would be back until the first tournament game, but she came back in less than four months. To do that is just incredible.”
Harris was dedicated to recovery, undergoing physical therapy four times a week while also attending practices and games. When she wasn’t at games or in therapy, she was rehabbing.
Her work ethic paid off in other ways. Harris was determined to get a Division I college scholarship, something scouts and coaches thought was not possible. She improved her all-around game, playing with Dayton Metro in AAU and working out hard in the offseason. Chicago State offered and she signed a letter of intent.
“There were a lot of people who doubted her in a way,” Mummey said. “They didn’t think she could play D-I after tearing her ACL. She worked really hard and began to complete all the aspects of her game. Last year I said her defense was a little sluggish, [and] she wouldn’t be able to play at college, let alone D-I, if she didn’t improve. She spent the whole preseason last year working on defense.”
The improvement hasn’t just been personal. The Yellow Jackets were 4-17 last season. Sidney was 9-5 going into Wednesday’s game at Troy. At 2-1 in the GWOC North, Sidney was one game behind Troy (3-0). Harris made another career mark along the way, surpassing 1,000th career points against St. Marys on Dec. 29.
“It’s pretty exciting,” Harris said. “It feels a lot better than it has. I think we just got better as a team and everyone has started to click, including our leadership. I hope we can keep it going.”