2013 Story of the Year: Crystal Metz
- Written on Friday, 08 March 2013
|Town: Kokomo, Indiana
Crystal Metz, 13, of Kokomo, Indiana, suffered a pulled meniscus and torn ACL on her left knee while playing a basketball game against Eastern Middle School on March 6, 2012. Her injuries required reconstructive surgery, performed at Payton Manning Children's Hospital in Indianapolis, Indiana, on April 2nd. The surgery replaced her left ACL with a tendon from her left quad muscle.
Metz spent much of the 2012 softball season recovering from her surgery and undergoing intense physical therapy. This meant that a substitute would wear her #13 uniform and take her position with Howard County Inferno 12U, "it's not easy watching someone else take your place on the field and wear your uniform number because you can't physically play the sport that you love," said Metz.
"The hardest part was not attending the World Series in Northern Indiana," said Monica Metz, Crystal's mother.
After months of physical therapy, on September 27th, Crystal was medically cleared to compete in sports, albeit with a knee brace. She joined the Howard County Thunders 13U where she now plays pitcher and first base; she also regained her #13 uniform.
Metz participated in her first tournament since returning from injury on October 19th. The Howard County Thunder won the Legacy tournament championship, going undefeated in five games. Crystal had the third most hits of the entire team at 14. During the final game, Metz scored two runs against the Tidal Waves, and the Thunders beat the Waves 5-0.
"I am excited to be nominated for, Story of the Year. It's great that I can share my story with everyone and let them know that you can overcome injuries. It has been hard getting back to the way I was, before the accident, but I do feel like I am stronger."