CAMPBELLSVBURG, Ind. (WDRB) -- Coming off a sophomore season in which he set a West Washington High School record with over 2,400 yards rushing, Bobby Stevens saw his junior year end almost before it started.
"Our very first game, in the second quarter, I stepped in a hole," Stevens said. "It made me dislocate my ankle, and then a player hit my ankle hard. My ankle dislocated, and then my fibula broke, and my tibia fractured."
Stevens' junior year was done, but he was told that there was still a chance to be back for a senior season. And he was ready to do whatever it took to make that happen.
"He really buys in to what you tell him," said Duane Nance, West Washington's, offensive coordinator and strength and conditioning coach. "Not every kid's really like that. I told Bobby early on it was going to take a lot of work, it was going to take a lot of time."
"It's been phenomenal," senior lineman Andrew Lewis said. "He's managed to stay positive through all of it. He's never changed. He's a real good guy. He's worked hard to get back where he was."
There have had to be adjustments in his game.
"I'm a different player," Stevens said. "My sophomore year, all I could do was just run super fast past people. But now it's like, I can't get past all those kids that are faster than me, so I gotta plow through them here and there."
He may be a little bigger and not quite as fast, but he's back, playing some receiver and running back this year for the 11-0 Senators and answering the call when an injury to a teammate had him carrying the load again last week.
"He rushed the ball 29 times for over 240 yards and was really the catalyst and the key to helping us secure that victory in the regional championship," Nance said.
"It feels amazing being back, being able to play with my brothers," Stevens said. "Because last year, it felt like I wasn't connected to them, me being injured. But now that I'm back, it feels like I'm basically a new man."
Now Stevens and his "brothers" are one win from a dream trip to Indianapolis. West Washington hosts fellow unbeaten Covenant Christian at 7 p.m. Friday for the right to go to Lucas Oil Stadium and play for the Indiana State Single A title the following week.
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