After a long and ongoing recovery, a familiar smile and jump shot in Tulsa during the summer months has returned to doing what she loves Shanna Zolman is playing full-court five-on-five basketball again.
Being able to play again is so freeing, Zolman said. Hopefully I'll be blessed with another opportunity to play this game that I love. I don't feel like there's any extra inhibitions at this point. We'll see as I progress in the next couple weeks to see what else I need to further hone my skill set on, not that I don't need work all around. But if there's work that needs to be done, I'll do it.
Crossley underwent surgery on her left anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) on January 26, 2011 and is currently in the process of rehabbing. Three years ago, Crossley also tore her left ACL causing her to miss the 2008 season. After an off-season of recovery; she returned to the court in 2009 only to tear her meniscus in the same left knee, holding her to just 20 games for the season.
After her last repair went poorly, Zolman had to decide with her doctor at the University of Tennessee whether or not to move forward with another procedure and attempt to return to play professional basketball.
I honestly don't think that he personally thought I could do it, Zolman said. But, I've been patient, lifting, rehabbing correctly, and living an active life in Seattle as I normally would. He said I am more than capable of playing and the decision was totally up to me because the knee actually benefited from this last surgery, that's how bad things were getting in there.
Zolman, a University of Tennessee graduate, started 16 of the 30 games she appeared in for the Shock in 2010. In 21.3 minutes/game, she averaged 9.7 points, 1.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists while shooting a team best 42.2 percent from three. In 2011, she returned to Tulsa to be on the LiveAccess broadcast team while participating in basketball camps with the Shock Basketball Academy
Since the end of the season, Zolman has been living and rehabbing in Seattle while working with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
The easiest part of the process for me has been time. I've had plenty of it and it's been such a blessing this time around, Zolman said. I constantly have people telling me to slow down, take your time, and do what my heart is telling me to do (playing or not). I still have a passion, so I'm slowly going to get back. The hardest part has been being patient. I'm not a patient person and there are definite moments where I want to know where, what, and when.
Zolman is continuing to work relentlessly in pursuit of a full recovery and is hoping to be in the best shape of her life for the onset of Shock training camp this spring. Specifically shes working on her defensive lateral movement, closeouts, finishes offensively and that anything involves a tight cut, plant or contact. However, on top of her physical challenges, she is also working to overcoming any doubts and fears of putting stress on her knees during training so she can wholeheartedly focus on basketball this spring.
My timetable from now until training camp is to progress every two weeks, Zolman said. I want to focus on specific aspects of the game and progress every couple of weeks in them, so by the time training camp rolls around I will be prepared, healthy, strong, and in the best shape of my life ... with my shot right on.