Parkway Central standout girls basketball player out with a knee injury
By: Warren Mayes
Parkway Central senior Chelsy Gibson will undergo knee surgery Friday and will miss the remainder of the girls basketball season for the Colts.
The 5-foot-7 forward was hurt doing what she does best — hustling on the court.
“I tore my ACL in a game against St. Charles,” Gibson said. “I was going to save the ball from going out of bounds. I stepped down and my knee shifted to the right and I just fell.
“I didn’t think it was my ACL at first. Then I went to the doctor and he checked it out and told me it was torn. I had an MRI and it showed I tore my ACL.”
The surgery will take about 90 minutes, Gibson said. To recover, will take about six months of rehabilitation.
“It was very disappointing,” Gibson said. “I want to have the surgery and get back as fast as I can. I should be able to play next fall.”
Coach Brian Guilfoyle said she should have a full recovery.
“The doctor anticipates her return to full basketball activity by the end of summer,” Guilfoyle said.
The loss stopped Gibson’s senior season. She finished with a 10.1 points per game scoring average. She also pulled down 7.6 rebounds a game.
“She was having a great season,” Guilfoyle said. “She is part of a good team. She is also one of the team captains and is one of our best defensive players. For her career, she has average almost a double double with over 10 points a game and 10 rebounds.”
Gibson ends her time at Parkway Central at No. 2 in the career rebounds list and finished in the top 20 in scoring.
Gibson began playing basketball in third grade. Her stepfather, Michael Nettles, got her interested in basketball and worked with her to develop her game.
Now, she has to take a break from the sport she loves. However, she is not taking a break from her teammates.
“It’s sad. It’s disappointing,” Gibson said. “I still go to the practices and I still go to the games. I still consider myself a part of the team and I’m always there. We’re having a lot of fun this year.”
That’s typical of Gibson, Guilfoyle said.
“She is an intense competitor. She works very hard in practice and that translated into the games,” Guilfoyle said. “She is very fast and is a great leaper which helps her on defense and in rebounding.
“She is very coachable. Anything we teach her during practice will be implemented in the games. She has a good attitude and works very hard.”
As a team captain, Gibson certainly was a leader for her teammates.
“I would say is vocal but she leads by example more than anything else,” Guilfoyle said. “She listens to the coaches and improves her game daily to become a better player. She also performs extremely well in the classroom. Her last semester GPA was a 3.5 which is a fantastic example to set for the younger ladies.”
Gibson was a four-year varsity performer for the Colts. Guilfoyle has been the coach for the past three seasons.
“The year before I started, the team was 2-24 and Chelsy was a freshman,” Guilfoyle said. “As the head coach, I see her being a big part of our success. With our current team it is very hard to be in the starting lineup as a freshman.”
Guilfoyle remembers first season Gibson play. He knew he had someone to help turn around the fortunes for the Colts.
“I saw her after her freshman year during the summer. I knew immediately that she was an impact player,” Guilfoyle said. “Her and Alison Magruder were going to be my only returning starters which meant we had a really young team They worked hard over the summer and really turned the program around.
“She has improved over the years. She has become more consistent from game to game and has taken responsibility for her actions on and off the court.”
Gibson wants to play in college. She is looking at Fontbonne University and Greenville College.
“Playing college basketball is important to me,” said Gibson, who wants to study sports medicine.
For his part, Guilfoyle said he will miss her around the court.
“You cannot replace a player like her that does well in all areas on and off the court,” Guilfoyle said. “She is very well liked by her teammates and coaches so is will be very hard to see her go.”