Healthy again, the Laker golfer looks to pick up where she left off
Last fall, Katie Bird of Camdenton High School was not only one of the best players on the Lakers' girls' golf team, but one of the best sophomores in the state. Bird was a week away from district competition with a real shot at advancing.
"My sophomore year was going pretty good. It was definitely a lot better than my freshman year," Bird stated.
Then, as the famous John Lennon quote says, "life is what happens while you're busy making other plans." The now 16-year-old strained her left wrist in the middle of a golf tournament.
"She tore some tendons and a couple ligaments. We were told that if she continued that she would probably have to be in a cast and if we would rest it, that she should totally recover," Katie's mother, Amy Bird, said.
Katie didn't take the news that her sophomore year would have to get cut short very well.
"She was not happy with me. She wanted to play. I'm the one that made the decision, because she was so young, she had two more years to make it. They were saying that if it got worse there would be physical therapy, possible surgery, so I made her quit," Amy explained.
Katie took the rest of the fall and the winter off, much to her chagrin. As soon as spring returned to the lake, so did Katie to the course without any tentativeness.
"She has no fear. She'll just get out there and just goes for it. I was more concerned about how hard she would be on herself knowing that she had to quit early. She didn't get started to play until later because of the weather and her soccer schedule. She got out a lot later. I was afraid that she would be kind of hard on herself when she wouldn't score the way she wanted," Amy said.
Katie is optimistic about the coming season not only for herself, but the Laker girls' golf team as well.
"I think we are going to be pretty good. We lost some of our seniors but we have at least one good freshman coming in, possibly another, so I think we're going to be good. Our top four are set but the fifth spot could be open," Katie elaborated.
As far as her personal goals for her junior campaign go, they are simple but lofty.
"I want to make it to state and start shooting in the 80s," Katie commented.
Katie has been golfing since she could hold a club. Her father, David, is a golf pro, and it's always funny how clubs find their ways into the hands of the children of those men and women more often than not.
She says her favorite course that she has played so far has been Meadow Lake, and Sedalia has been her least favorite.
Outside of golf, Katie also plays soccer in the spring and is in Camdenton's band.
"She starts at 6 a.m. and then doesn't get home until 6:30 p.m. She not only excels in both of those but manages to pull straight As as well," Amy stated.
Outside of class, extracurriculars and homework, Katie says her favorite activity is resting. She did plenty of that over last fall and winter. It's time for her to return to the golf course and card as many "Bird-ies" as she can.