Burke bounces back after ACL injury

Junior Avery Burke is ready to return to lacrosse season after sitting out the previous one due to a tear in her Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL).
Burke’s knee popped unexpectedly last March in the second scrimmage of the season when she went to change direction.
Burke said the seven month recovery process went smoothly and she stayed on track with her physical therapy, despite the inconveniences.
“It’s tough when you can’t do what you love,” Burke said. “Mentally, it was a little bit tougher. I was missing a big recruiting season for lacrosse, and it scared me.”
Burke’s interest in lacrosse began in early grade school.
“I got into lacrosse in third grade when my friend Annie Leap was starting,” Burke said. “We decided to do it together.”
Besides lacrosse, Burke plays field hockey and soccer.
“I played soccer for the longest time, and I actually thought that’s what I would be playing in high school,” Burke said.
Burke said she makes an effort to balance playing lacrosse along with her academic assignments.
“By [using] the time I have in school, [I have retained] extra time to relax and watch Netflix,” Burke said. “After practice, I’ve been trying to work on getting more sleep, but sometimes it’s tough. Coffee is my best friend.”
As a student athlete, Burke said her schedule can be challenging.
“There are some days where I have to take a test after school, practice lacrosse for two and a half hours and [there’s still]homework to do,” Burke said.
Moving forward from her medical setback, Burke said she hopes to play as long as possible and aspires to compete at the collegiate level one day. She said she is ready to show her full potential physically, but mentally she is nervous about the strength of her knee.
After the surgery, Burke struggled to regain her confidence.
“A few months [after] my surgery, I [lacked] motivation because I lost track of what I was working towards,” Burke said.
Through this adversity, Burke’s self-awareness and perseverance has gradually matured.
“My injury has taught [me] how important it is to work hard,” Burke said. “It’s been tough for me coming back. [This experience] had only motivated me to work harder. To see results in anything, you have to really put in the work.”
Girls lacrosse head coach Valerie Gibbons said though Burke was not able to play last season she was still always at team events encouraging her teammates on the sidelines.
“Seeing her back on the field is amazing and I know how much it means to her,” Gibbons said. “Once she hits the field she’s such a competitor that there’s really no stopping her.”
Senior and lacrosse player Laura Boyle said she has seen how hard Burke has worked and is excited for her return.
“To see her back on the field, knowing how much she’s wanted it […] it’s so inspiring,” Boyle said.