Palo Alto High School senior girls basketball player Hope Crockett will return to game action for the first time in over a year after tearing her anterior cruciate ligament when the Vikings hit the road to take on the Mountain View High School Spartans tomorrow at 6:15 p.m.
After tearing her ACL in Nov. 2012, Crockett underwent surgery a month later on Dec. 28 marking the start of a rigorous rehabilitation process, according to Crockett.
However, this is not the only surgery that she needed to get back on the floor. Months later she underwent another surgical procedure setting her return time back by several weeks.
“I had a second surgery in May of 2013 to remove a bone fragment and excess scar tissue [in my knee],” Crockett said.
According to healthmd.com, the ACL is vital for athletes because it provides stability and minimizes stress on the knee by restraining excessive movement of the lower leg bone to the thigh bone. Without it athletes are prone to tearing other ligaments or dislocating the entire knee.
However, the journey back has not been entirely negative. Through her trials and tribulations Crockett has found a silver lining in learning how to lead from the bench and becoming considerably stronger in the mental part of the game.
“It’s taught me how to lead even when I can’t be on the court,” she said. “Mentally I’m much stronger, and I have a greater prospective on sports in general.”
Although Crockett has been great supporting her teammates from the sidelines, many are ready for her to come back and contribute to the team on the court again. According to sophomore guard Maddy Atwater, Crockett’s return will bring much needed depth and experience to a very young squad.
“Having her back is definitely a positive, we run a fast-paced game and need the legs,” Atwater said. “Having her out there also brings us experience which is gonna be a huge help.”
Crockett says she will be playing in short stints as she eases her way back up to game speed.
As for her expectations, she hopes to contribute to her team in any way needed and take in the joy of being on the court again for hopefully the remainder of her senior season.
“Returning tomorrow I hope to contribute and help my team in whatever way I can,” Crockett said. “I want to enjoy the game and have fun.”