by Alan Hoskins
Nearly six months of countless hours of rehabilitative work has paid big dividends for Kansas City Kansas Community College basketball guard Samantha Hurst.
Sidelined by a torn articular cartilage in her right knee 10 games into the 2013-2014 Lady Blue Devil season, Hurst’s intensive rehabilitative work from micro-fracture surgery has earned her a scholarship to continue her basketball career at Northwest Missouri State University in Maryville.
“I felt comfortable when I visited there,” Hurst said. “The environment and atmosphere of the town was awesome; everyone I came in contact with – the coaches, instructors and others on the staff – were very willing to help in whatever way was needed.”
It’s an opportunity Hurst was not sure she’d ever get when she went down in the first eight minutes of the Blue Devils’ home game against Central Methodist Dec. 2.
“I was never afraid I wouldn’t play but I was nervous I would not get the looks I wanted.”
Fortunately, Central Methodist had seen Hurst prior to the injury when she was leading the Blue Devils to a 9-1 start with the only loss at No. 1 ranked North Iowa 91-87. The Blue Devils’ leading scorer at the time, Hurst was averaging 13.6 points including a career high of 25 against Neosho County and 17 against North Iowa. In addition, she was averaging 4.8 rebounds from the guard spot.
“If we had had Sam the entire year, we would not have lost some of the games we lost,” said KCKCC coach Valerie Stambersky, whose Blue Devils finished 24-8 with six of the eight losses to teams ranked in the Top 5 in the nation. “She’s the epitome of what college athletes should be – solid academically, tireless worker, did everything that was asked, never cut corners or made bad decisions, everything you’d want an athlete to be on and off the court.”
Named to “Who’s Who in Community Colleges in America,” Hurst was also a work-study student assisting Athletic Director Tony Tompkins.
“I’m really happy Samantha is getting a scholarship and is going to be able to continue playing basketball,” Tompkins said. “She’s a high quality kid with a great work ethic; very deserving and we’re very proud.”
Hurst began her rehabilitation almost immediately after her injury, spending one to two hours a day five days a week under the watchful eye of KCKCC trainer Rodney Christensen.
“A lot of athletes coming off an injury won’t make the commitment but she was there every day, always with a smile on her face,” Christensen said. “It takes a lot of patience and a lot of hard work and she did it every day with a great attitude.”
Hurst will to continue to work with Christensen through the end of June, then move to the Maryville campus. The daughter of Roger and Lori Hurst of Harrisonville, she has two brothers, Jake and Justin.
At Northwest Missouri, she’ll be reunited with a former KCKCC teammate, Alexandria Blaurock, who was selected KCKCC’s Female Athlete of the Year for 2012-13.
“It’s exciting to know I’ll have someone on the team I know and have played with,” said Hurst, who is not content with just receiving a scholarship. “I want to go there and be successful, not just ride the bench.”
Alan Hoskins is the sports information director at KCKCC.
Recently architectural students at the University of Kansas presented their ideas for a better community.
This architectural class is for juniors who are enrolled in the architectural program at the University of Kansas. They go into a community and see what is needed to make that community better through architecture.
Recently they came up with some design ideas for a healthy campus in Kansas City, Kan., which is planned near 11th and State Avenue. A presentation was on display at the CHWC offices in Kansas City, Kan.
A lot of students went around and asked the local residents what they thought and what they needed. Out of this came some new ideas to make the community a better place to live.
One student, Kate Smith, a junior, came up with an idea where children could come to a building that is specially designed and is built next to a lake. This building would give them a first-hand experience regarding biology and it would be designed in such a way that would encourage the children to learn.
“One thing I found out when I went to the community was the lack of education in this community. That is why I came up with this idea. It is designed to encourage children to learn,” Smith said. There were other student projects just like Kate’s, and all of them were very well done.
Overall this project was a huge success for not only the students and community as well. It brought some new ideas and new concepts into Kansas City, Kan., area. In the future some of these new ideas might be used.