Ibarra ready to return after season-ending injury in 2016

SAN BENITO — Bouncing back in sports can be a daunting task. The recovery process and keeping a competitive edge are some challenges an athlete may face.

San Benito senior Crystal Ibarra overcame a fractured fourth metatarsal in her left foot.

Against Harlingen High last season, Ibarra went up for a ball and landed awkwardly on her left foot. She didn’t come out of the game immediately and at first Ibarra was told it was a sprain in her foot. She later found out, however, that her injury wasn’t a sprain but a fracture and she would have to miss the remainder of the 2016 season.

“It was hard not being able to be out there with my team,” said Ibarra. “At first the doctors told me it was a sprain so I planned on playing that next Tuesday. I later learned it was a fracture, but that didn’t stop me. I went to every game and supported my team.”

Ibarra had played every district game until her injury against Harlingen High on the final game of the first half. Ibarra, who also runs track, wasn’t able to participate in athletic activity until the end of December.

“It took three months. I was in a boot for the first six weeks then I had to learn how to walk with my shoe because I lost muscle in my foot. After that I did a lot of rehab work and finally I was able to get back into the swing of things,” she said.

Ibarra is a three-year varsity member and has her sights set on her senior season.

“I want to finish strong, win district and make the playoffs,” Ibarra said. “My injury motivated me so much got get back out here and compete. Coach expects us to step up and we don’t accept mediocrity. We have set our goals high and are ready to meet those goals.”