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Healthy and Happy is Hope for Halvorson



For an athlete, a season ending injury can seem like a death sentence. It is tough to handle when you have already found a measure of success in your game, bonded with teammates and still have the competitive juices still flowing. Add watching your team’s ups and downs, knowing there is very little you can do to contribute to your team’s success or short comings and the shackels become even tougher. But there were two ways Kaylee Halverson (5’7″, G, Luther College, 2012) could have chosen to deal with that scenario which has happened twice already. It could have either consumed her, causing her to throw in the towel on the game she loves, or she could do as she did, dig deep to find the resolve to get back to the elite status where she once stood.

Riding high in the summer of 2009, after both being selected to the U16 National Cadette team, and earning a silver medal at the FIBA America’s qualification tournament, came Kaylee’s first sobering moment of truth. Kaylee’s first major setback was to her right knee in January of 2010. The injury took place quite early in the high school season and was due to stress, brought on by the way she jumped. “The season was a struggle until I fixed the damage,” remembers Halvorson as the surgery seemed to have been inevitable. The surgery was a success, and after recovery time and brief rehab she was able to represent her province at the Nationals in Ontario in Early August. Later on that summer, she then went on to represent her country in Singapore at the 2010 Youth Olympic Games where her 3-on-3 team placed 4th out of 20 teams. But, as bad fortune would have it, yet another injury would strike. “It occurred from an unfortunate fall during a volleyball game towards the end of my high school season leading into my high school basketball season” said Halvorson, referring to the actions that required her April 2011 surgery. “This surgery has kept me out of competition for the past 3 months and [I’m] currently still working on rehabilitation.”

The road back from this second surgery has been far more trying for Kaylee. There have been numerous glitches in her recovery that has seen her take a month to even get off of crutches from the arthroscopic, debridement and lateral menisectomy. And, the impacts of the delay from those glitches will certainly be felt by her. “I will not be attending the National’s this year due to not being able to play by the needed date.” Nonetheless, Halvorson remains both devoted and optimistic to both her team and a complete recovery. Kaylee, a Luther College Lion, reminisced, “I have played basketball for the senior team for all 3 years of my schooling there. It was difficult for both the team and myself to accept…”. She will be missing out on could have stood to be her biggest opportunity to make a spash as a high schooler. But her maturity about the situation, showed itself as she seems to keep her eyes fixed on the bigger picture. “As hard as it is to remove myself from the sport for the summer, being fully recovered it the number 1 priority in my life right now and reseting and rehabilitation is the only way to achieve that.”

But, being the true competitor that she is, digging deep and staying focused on the prize remains her motivation. “A successful year includes myself being 100% physically healthy and mentally.” And with NCAA high majors such as Oregon, Rice and University of New Hampshire and still very much interested in her after her graduation, her future still looks very bright. “The year would be considered a success if it went without injury or pain, and I was able to get back to doing what I love, which is playing tough and competitive basketball.”

Kaylee may have stayed off the map for a couple of high school seasons. But, with competitive juices flowing the whole time, the death sentence may just be for her competition this coming season.