By Cody Whitlock
Sports Writer, Decatur Daily
Kristy Pevahouse felt a pop and immediately feared the worst.
Legging out a ground ball during practice just three days before last year?s opening game, the Calhoun Community College outfielder realized her season was over before she made it to first base. Anterior cruciate ligament and meniscus tears made her a spectator for the 2009 season.
?Right when I did it, I was scared. I didn?t know what happened. I just felt a pop,? she said. ?I knew I had to go straight to the doctor. I was really nervous because I had never had an injury to this extent.
?I was trying to get up and walk around, but I just couldn?t do it. I couldn?t even stand up on it. It broke my heart to know it was something worse than just a bruise.?
After a year of rehabilitation, she is back and has banged out 22 hits and driven home a team-leading 21 RBIs this season. The former Hartselle High star feels like she?s making up for lost time.
?I finally got my speed back. It took me a little while. After I started playing again on it, I noticed I was a little bit slower than I was and that I couldn?t steal bases like I used to. After about a month of playing on it, I am a little stronger and pretty much back to normal,? she said.
?It was kind of difficult to come right back into things because I had to work out so much to try and get my leg as strong as my other one. I was kind of struggling at the plate at first because I was relying on my good leg too much.?
The slow start has yielded a productive season, though. In a win against Bevill State last week, she finished with three hits and two RBIs. She?s also swiped three bases.
?It was hard for me because I love the sport so much. I had been playing softball since I was 5 years old. This really opened my eyes up by not being able to play in my first year of college. It really boosted my energy to want to come back for the next year. I started working my knee out and getting stronger to where I could play again,? she said.
Pevahouse said the rehabilitation process went smoothly, mainly because she maintained a positive attitude throughout the process.
?I think the whole thing is mental. If you really think you can do it, you push yourself a little bit harder. I really wanted to play,? she said. ?Softball is my life, and I really worked hard to where I knew I could play. Mental ability is at least 90 percent of it.?