Outfielder Cortney Bunker's freshman season started out promising.
Bunker collected 15 hits in her first nine games— including a four hit game versus Lake-Sumter State College—and boasted a .556 batting average.
But then her season came to an abrupt end when she suffered a season-ending knee injury.
"It was pretty tough. "It was depressing actually," Bunker said of the injury. "I had to ask people to help me get groceries since I couldn't even drive."
The 5-foot-7 inch sophomore is attempting a comeback this season and her teammates are excited to have her back.
"She's a very strong-minded individual," said freshman pitcher Kiana East. "She's very excited to get back on the field with us, and I appreciate her for how passionate she is as a player."
Bunker's passion for softball came at a young age. Her mother introduced her to the sport in middle school.
After middle school Bunker attended East River High School, in Orlando. The team won multiple district titles, and she earned all-metro conference honors during her junior and senior years.
"When high school came around, I played other sports too, but I knew that I had played this sport my whole life," Bunker said. "My parents pushed me and devoted their whole life into me playing."
Now Bunker is excited to get her softball career back on track after last year's injury.
"I'm super excited," Bunker said. "I've been ready ever since I got hurt."
Lady Sharks head softball coach, Gina De Agüero, said expectations are high for Bunker as she comes back from the injury.
"I expect Cortney to come to every practice and work hard to earn a starting position," De Agüero said. "She needs to be mentally strong to get to where she left off last season."