Another torn ACL sidelines Taylor

Thursday, November 8, 2012
Brooke Taylor

Southeast Missouri State women's basketball coach Ty Margenthaler got the news he expected but hoped would be different.

Margenthaler learned Wednesday that forward Brooke Taylor suffered another torn ACL and will miss her third straight season with the Redhawks.

Taylor has not yet played a regular-season game at Southeast due to illness and injury.

"I'm just devastated for her," Margenthaler said.

Taylor recently injured the knee -- the same knee she tore the ACL in last year -- during practice, and Margenthaler feared at the time that she had suffered a similar fate.

"We were really hoping it wasn't [an ACL] but I kind of expected it," Margenthaler said.

It's just the latest in a run of misfortune for the 6-foot-1 Taylor, who was expected to be among Southeast's top players when she joined the program three years ago. She was a four-time all-state selection out of Bismarck (Mo.) High School.

Taylor missed the entire 2010-11 campaign with a blood disorder, then saw action in Southeast's only exhibition game last year before suffering a season-ending knee injury during practice.

"She's a great kid. She's worked so hard and to be out three years in a row. ... it's just a shame," Margenthaler said. "She wants to play in the worst way. She's a gifted player. It hurts the team not having her, but we're thinking more about her than anything else."

Margenthaler said he has not yet talked to Taylor about her future basketball plans. If Taylor decides to continue her college career, she would have at least two seasons of eligibility remaining -- perhaps three if she is granted a medical hardship by the NCAA.

"Right now we're just going to support her and be with her, try to help get her through this," Margenthaler said. "We'll definitely do what she wants to do. If she wants to continue to play, we'll support her. If she doesn't want to play any more, she'll still be on scholarship as she continues her studies.

"We haven't really talked about any of that yet. We just told her to stay positive and we're trying to figure out when the best time to do surgery is."

Southeast is without another key player, guard Katie Norman, who was forced to end her basketball career several weeks ago because of lingering back problems.

Norman missed all of last season because of a back injury that required surgery. She was Southeast's co-leading scorer as a sophomore in 2010-11 with an average of 8.9 points per game.

Southeast opens its season Friday at home against Wright State in a 6:30 p.m. tipoff.

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