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Bohn bounces back for pack

After missing her sophomore season with a torn ACL, Washington midfielder Emily Bohn (14) is back and has played a key role for the Pam Pack soccer team this season. (WDN Photo/Brian Haines)

The choice to play soccer may not have been hers, but when she had no other choice but to sit on the sideline it was hard for Emily Bohn to say whether the pain from the torn anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee was worse than the torture that came with not being on the field.
Bohn, Washington’s star junior midfielder, was forced to sit out the entire 2011 season after she tore her ACL playing travel ball in the fall of 2010. The injury propelled her into a strenuous rehab process, which was almost as difficult for the soccer-lifer as being away from the game.
“I was cutting and I just felt it pop and give out. I didn’t really know what happened,” Bohn said of her injury.
Upon discovering she would not be able to play for almost a year Bohn said, “It was horrible. It was the worst news I could ever get.”
To understand Bohn’s love for the game you have to understand that she has been dribbling a soccer ball from the time she was still dribbling at the mouth.
“When I was three-and-a-half my parents put me in soccer. I never really had a choice,” Bohn joked. “And I love it.”
Despite not being able to get on the field, Bohn couldn’t stay away from it.
“I came out here and watched my team. I went to every practice and was just here for them,” Bohn said. “That kept me going.”
This year Bohn has ditched the pom-poms and added a leg brace and is here for her team as a captain and centerpiece of the team’s offense and defense as center-midfielder.
“She’s in the middle of the field so she controls the tempo of our team,” Washington coach Ed Rodriguez said. “She’s one of our top scorers and distributors and she also plays tough defense. She’s always chasing the ball and never complains. She’s one of our captains and a role model.”
Rodriguez cited the junior’s strength and fearlessness on the field as her biggest assets, and that courage was put to the test the first time she joined her teammates at practice with her repaired knee.
“It was scary. It was so scary,” Bohn said. “I don’t think I was going slower I just didn’t trust myself as much. But, I trust my knee now.”
Though you could never tell by watching her battle opposing players up and down the field, Bohn said her injury slides into her mind the same way she does for loose balls.
“Yea. Oh yea, I think about it,” Bohn said. “My brace is a constant reminder. It rubs me and bothers me.”
While Bohn may have been scared on the inside her coaches and teammates didn’t notice as she continued to play her usual all-out brand of soccer each day in practice.
“No. I didn’t see it. She looked like she never missed a step,” Rodriguez said. “She’s just very good at using what God gave her: strength. She’s very good at using her body to her advantage.”
With a healthy Bohn it’s the Pam Pack that has an advantage, and with and 8-6 record, Washington is piecing together one of its best seasons in recent memory as it makes a push toward the playoffs. For the junior captain, a postseason appearance would make her return to the pitch that much sweeter and help provide more promise for her senior year.
“God, it would be great,” Bohn said. “It would make it even better if we made it this year because it would help us prepare for next year.”