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Subscriber exclusive: The long road back

Red Wing senior Katie Stegora shares a laugh with Macy Kelly after practice. Kelly said Stegora had a positive attitude throughout her recovery after tearing her ACL. -- R-E photo by Chris Harrell1 / 2
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Each time Katie Stegora straps the bulky brace onto her left knee and jogs onto the volleyball court she is reminded that nine months ago the sport she loves was taken from her.

During warm-ups for a home match against Cannon Falls on Aug. 31 last year, a stray volleyball rolled onto the court as Stegora, then a junior, practiced a jump serve. As she leaped, Stegora was oblivious to the months of hard work that waited once she landed on top of the ball.

Stegora, now a senior, is still dealing with the injury more than a year later. She tore the anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee, an increasingly common injury in youth athletics and especially for high school girls. The impact of coming down on the volleyball caused Stegora indescribable pain and a grueling recovery.

This article is only available to those who purchase the Republican Eagle print edition or subscribe to Pick up the Oct. 12, 2011, newspaper for the full story.

Chris Harrell
Chris Harrell is a sports reporter for the Red Wing Republican Eagle. Previously, he interned at the St. Paul Pioneer Press and The Daily Caller in Washington, D.C. For updates on local sports, follow Chris on Twitter at @RECHarrell.
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