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The Return of Kailey Wilson

Many athletes suffer an injury during their athletic careers. Unfortunately, for Kailey Wilson, she suffered the injury of her anterior cruciate ligament—better known as the ACL.

     Wilson commits herself to multiple sports:  basketball and softball. Being that her last name is Wilson, and the fact that she’s 5’10”, you’d think her main sport is basketball, but Wilson’s heart is engraved in softball. 

    Starting at the age of 7, Wilson imagined that softball would be a thing that she did forever.  Being burdened with an injury that extended longer than six months, she was forced to face a journey that had taught her that life is filled with many opportunities that you shouldn’t take for granted; sports being one of them.

    Wilson’s life has always been centered around sports.

     “I sort of took sports for granted prior to my injury, but after my injury, I thought to myself  ‘wow, your time in sports is limited, and it’s really important that you make the most of it,’” she said.

    Her injury occurred in the Colorado Sparkler tournament over the summer.  Wilson attempted to slide into home base, but was confronted with a barrier.

    “I was running home during the Sparkler tournament, and I was about to do a slide-by, but the catcher stuck out her leg, my leg hit her shin guard, everything popped and went downhill from there,” Wilson said.

    Traveling from doctor appointment to doctor appointment, Wilson finally had surgery in late July.  She knew that undergoing surgery was the best option for her, but prepared herself for any potential complication.

    “I had to be on crutches for six weeks and I couldn’t put any pressure on my knee, but after the six weeks I finally started to walk on it [with the use of] one crutch.  Then, after a few more weeks of using that I could get rid of the crutches and proudly walk all by myself,” she said.

    With this journey under her belt, Wilson has advocated that through life she is more than thankful for the opportunities that happen for her on a daily basis.

    “Iʻm thankful to have the opportunity to get better everyday.  I’m also thankful for my family.  Most of all, Iʻm thankful for the opportunity to play again,” she said. “Through this journey, I’ve gained confidence in both myself and in my knee.”

    A big part of Wilson’s journey to recovery was the support from her family, notably, her mom.

     “This whole journey has destined me to be the best support system I could be for her.  Trying to stay positive and to always look toward our end goal, to get her back playing again.  No parent ever wants to see their child injured or hurt.  So when it does happen, it not only affects the athlete, but the family as a whole,” she said.

    Sitting this season out was a hard pill to swallow, and took some time to accept; but not being able to play didn’t keep Wilson away from the field nor from the court.  Wilson decided to manage for the seasons that she’d be absent from.  She couldn’t imagine her junior year being apart from either of her teams.

    “I decided to manage basketball and softball so I could stay involved with both sports and so I could be around my friends,” she said.  “My experience managing was pretty fun and I felt important when I had to go do something for both of my coaches.”

    As her stats were on pause, Wilson left off with a .537 batting average, a total of 41 runs—10 of them  being home-runs, and 47 “RBI’s” or when the batter hits a ball that allows a run to be scored.  As far as defense goes, Wilson limited herself to five errors out on the field, and added eight double plays and 15 assists.  With 248 total chances, Wilson participated in 208 putouts—leaving herself with a .980 fielding percentage.

    “My number one goal for this season is to make every single person on the team better, and I want to win more games than we did last year, and of course, the ultimate goal is to win state,” she said.

    On February 10, 2017, Wilson received the news for which she had been waiting months: she had been cleared to play softball again.  Without hesitation, Wilson got back out on the field the next morning with her competitive team, Colorado Styx, and picked back up right where she left off.

    As the the spring season is blooming, so is Kailey Wilson. During her extended off season, Wilson worked hard to assure that she’d be the best she can be.  Now that she is cleared, she is looking forward to finishing the business she started last year.

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2 Responses to “The Return of Kailey Wilson”

  1. Karen Wilson on February 24th, 2017 7:54 AM

    Great job Selena!

  2. Kathy Sabourin on February 24th, 2017 8:38 AM

    Great article that highlights the impact of an injury to athletes and the character required to come back. Thanks for highlighting this spectacular athlete and young lady!

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The Return of Kailey Wilson