Parker's McCulloch sheds light on knee injury

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Gazette staff
Sunday, February 2, 2014

Janesville Parker junior Morgan McCulloch spent the early portion of this year's girls basketball season on the bench.

After tearing the ACL in her knee last spring, she was patient yet persistent in her long road to recovery.

McCulloch is averaging more than nine points per game in the nine games since she returned to the Vikings' lineup. She scored a season-high 23 points in a victory over Beloit Memorial on Friday night and then shed some light on what it's like to come back from a dramatic injury.

Q: How and when did the injury occur?

A: This past spring I was playing (AAU) basketball and I tore it. It was rough at first and obviously disappointing, but my team was very supportive and my coaches were very supportive, and my family and friends. They were all really good in helping me.

Q: What was the rehabilitiation process like?

A: It was intense. I went to Madison, and they were very strict about everything. They want to make sure you're really ready before they release you. I was going up to Madison twice a week for classes and really hitting the weight room hard and getting my agility back and everything. It's a long process.

Q: What was the hardest part of it all?

A: I think keeping a good attitude is the hardest part—the mental mindset and staying positive with it.

Q: What was the process like when trying to determine when you were ready to get back on the court?

A: I was working really hard, and my coaches were really good with letting me do what I needed to do at practice. I was really excited, but nervous at the same time, with testing out to see if I could play. The first couple games I just wanted to get a few minutes in. I was really nervous coming back, not playing for seven months. But definitely the more minutes I get and the more time I'm playing, it's really feeling better and I'm growing in confidence.

Q: What kind of advice would you give to a young athlete who might go through a similar injury?

A: There's definitely high moments and low moments, and you've got to keep the positive attitude. And you've got to work hard at it every day. It's something that really requires a lot of effort, but you learn a lot from it. And if you have a good support group, you'll be good.

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