Long road ahead for Turner

Shortstop successfully undergoes surgery; prepared for rehab and recovery

Sheldon LongleySend an emailSeptember 1, 2022 887 4 minute readFacebookTwitterLinkedInShare via Email

 Kendalia Turner, shortstop with the Johnson’s Lady Truckers, suffered a severe leg injury during the New Providence Softball Association’s (NPSA) Women’s All-Star Game on the Banker’s Field at the Baillou Hills Sporting Complex last Saturday. She is shown being carried away on a stretcher. Photo: DANTE CARRER

Promising young shortstop in the New Providence Softball Association (NPSA) Kendalia Turner had no idea her first full season in the league would end in hurt and misery, but her spirits remain high. The 23-year-old former junior and senior national team player suffered a dislocated ankle and fractured fibula during the NPSA’s all-star games on the Banker’s Field at the Baillou Hills Sporting Complex on Saturday.

She remains upbeat, following a successful surgery, albeit knowing that a lengthy rehabilitation and recovery process awaits her. Turner suffered the injury while sliding into home plate, trying to avoid a tag in the bottom of the first inning of the women’s all-star game last Saturday. She said she was in excruciating pain.

The talented young player is out for the season and is hopeful of a return in 2023. Turner is the captain for the Johnson’s Lady Truckers in the NPSA, and said she intends to fully support her teammates in their push for a NPSA title this year.

“It’s very disappointing. I was looking forward to the completion of the season. Even all-star, I was looking forward to playing so it’s disappointing to go out in this way, but I’m not depressed,” she said. “That was the most people I saw to the park since the season started so I was excited to play. Softball has done a lot for me and I enjoy playing the game. This was like my first full-time season, because I was always away to school. I would come home during summer break and play, but now that I’m finished with school, this was all the softball I had so I took it a bit seriously. This is all a new experience for me, and it’s unfortunate, but now I have to adjust.”

Turner said she has received medical advice to not put any pressure on her leg for six weeks and then gradually get back into walking again and begin the recovery process. She currently wears a soft cast on her lower right leg, walks around with crutches and takes medication for the pain.

Prior to her injury, Turner was one of the best shortstops in women’s softball in the country. She left The Bahamas in 2014 after grade 10 to finish high school in the United States (US) – completing grades 11 and 12 at Lyndon Institute in Lyndon, Vermont. Following that, Turner accepted a full scholarship to Georgian Court University in Lakewood Township, New Jersey, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Finance and Accounting in 2020.

Nationally, Turner has represented The Bahamas at both the junior and senior national team levels. She was a member of The Bahamas’ team that travelled to the World Baseball Softball Confederation’s (WBSC) XII Junior Women’s Softball World Championship in Clearwater, Florida, in 2017; and a member of the team that competed in the WBSC’s IX Women’s Softball Pan American Championship in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, in 2019.

Due to a stoppage in play because of the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, and because of her time away in school in the US, this was Turner’s first full season in the NPSA.

“From I slid into home plate and felt the pain, I knew right away that it was something major,” said Turner. “On a pass ball, if I’m on third, a player like me, I going, and that was the situation. The ball bounced back off the back padding and it was coming back toward the plate. The pitcher and the catcher both went after the ball trying to make a play. There was a lot going on at the plate and I was coming in fast. Both the pitcher and the catcher were like almost in the basepath, so I went around and avoided them, and tried to slide, but my foot went directly into the plate. I watched my leg go two different ways – it was crazy.”

Turner said, for now, she’s taking the doctor’s advice, staying off her legs as much as possible, and taking it one day at a time.

“I try not to walk on it too much – just resting for now,” she said, “I never went through anything like this. This is my first major injury. It isn’t career-ending so that’s the good thing. I’ll miss the action this year, but I’ll be there to support my teammates and cheer them on. Hopefully, they could go out there and win a championship without me. I’m hopeful that recovery goes well, and if it’s the Lord’s will, I’ll be back next year.

“I just want to thank all of the players, coaches, officials and fans for the support. When I came out of the dugout and I saw everyone standing and clapping, that brought tears to my eyes. The support has been crazy good. Sometimes, you don’t think that you have such an impact on persons but it was really heart-warming to see that. The support was really overwhelming. God has been good to me and I expect the recovery to go smoothly.

“Please keep praying for me and keep showing me love and support. I’m going to need it all.”

Turner’s team, the Johnson’s Lady Truckers, is currently in a battle for the pennant in the NPSA. There is still one round of games remaining, and as the captain of the team, she is looking to support her teammates throughout the whole process.

In addition to playing night league softball, Turner coaches girls softball as an assistant with the Sports Center Players up by the Junior Baseball League of Nassau (JBLN), thereby giving back to the sport that has greatly assisted in her development as a player and as a person so far in her life.

She is eagerly anticipating the day of a return to softball action.


Start a Conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *