On the road to recovery: Kline hopes to help bring team to nationals

 

It was a sunny September day. Softballs hit the glove in unison and the sound echoed throughout the softball complex. The fall breeze carried the ball with ease over the outfield fence.

It felt like a perfect day for a University of Nebraska-Lincoln club softball game. That’s until sophomore Sara Kline felt a shooting pain all throughout her throwing arm. Then, nothing, only a numb sensation.

“It was an “Oh s***! What just happened?” moment.” Kline said. 

Kline was unsure how severe the injury was, so she decided to play the three remaining games of the season. When the pain became unbearable, to the point where she couldn’t throw a softball, she coached first base instead.

Kline avoided going to the doctor until it started affecting her school work.

“It felt good to practice again. I’m still struggling to get my strength back,” Kline said. “My long throws are not really there yet, but I was just happy to practice.”

The team practices three hours a week. Half the time the team focuses on batting the other half is focused on fielding.

During practices and games, her teammates have noticed her hard work and dedication to get back on the field.

“Sara is a very dependable teammate. She always willing to stand up to any challenge thrown at her,” Laura Springer, president of the UNL club softball team, said. “It truly shows her passion for the game.”

Kline is focused on playing in a Florida tournament next month where the UNL club softball team will compete against other college level club teams. The games played in Florida will not affect their standings within their conference, which includes Iowa State.

The team will play Iowa State in early April, and those results will determine if they make the postseason. Kline hopes the team will make it to regionals and nationals by the end of the season.

“My overall goal is to stay healthy and also make it to regionals and nationals this year,” Kline said. “I think it would be a nice moment for all of us.”

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