Sitting out the season difficult for BC athlete

Amber Hayden

Monique Hansen-Garcia, reporter

OdelThe 2013-14 women’s basketball season was a challenge for sophomore Mackenzie Odle because of injuries she suffered at the beginning and end of the season.
Odle broke her thumb on October 2013, but recovered well enough to start playing for Bakersfield College in late November.
She played regularly with only a couple of games left in the season, she tore her ACL and pulled her meniscus on Feb. 14 of this year. Both injuries required surgery.
Odle said that having to sit out was “discouraging,” but it pushed her to strive toward recovery.
During the season, she had impressed her fellow teammates and coach Paula Dahl, who said, “Mack’s intensity was key to our success.” Dahl noted that Odle has “amazing defense and intensity.”
Odle had a shooting percentage of 42.6 and a free-throw percentage of 51.4. She had 40 offensive rebounds and 28 defensive rebounds during the season, as well as 36 assists and 41 steals.
When not on the court, Odle is “thinking about playing, [and] how to improve my game,” she said.
Her teammate and good friend, Kirstyn Miller, has had nothing but admiration for Odle.
“The love she has for the sport is truly amazing,” Miller said. “I wish there were more athletes out there with as much compassion for the sport as she has. A lot of athletes take for granted their talent and she doesn’t.”
Odle is the only daughter of five children. Growing up with so many brothers, Odle was constantly playing sports with her brothers. She credits her brother, Jason, for being her first coach and teaching her how to play basketball in the fourth grade.
“I would play with my brothers and the [other] guys around,” Odle said.
Teaching Odle how to play was only part of the journey, as her brother’s competiveness began to form and mold the type of athlete Odle would become.
Odle’s support system is impressive on its own, from family and teammates to her boyfriend, Odle has received encouragment and support aimed towards her recovery.
“She never once let any of that tear her down,” Miller said of Odle’s injuries. “As soon as she was back on the court, she went harder in then anyone I know and still continued to help others be the best they could possibly be.”
Odle enjoys swimming as an alternative way to condition for sports and likes to run. She said: “Any type of defensive drills are my favorite drills to run.”
She can often be found wearing her favorite sneaker, Nike, and a pair of hoop shorts and T-shirt, always dressed to play. She has her favorite songs, “Bleeding Out,” by Imagine Dragons, “Cinderella Man,” By Eminem, “My Time,” by Fabulous, and “We Own It,” by Whiz Khalifa. Those are the songs that get continuous play, especially when Odle needs to be pumped up.
When asked what Odle’s regimen is she says simply, “My regimen is just to envision the game and how I want it to go.” Odle always stay positive and leaves the nerves out of play. “I picture how I am going to play and what’s going to happen,” she said.
Miller said, “Odle should be an inspiration to many. Not just me. Having dealt with all she’s been through yet still wants nothing more than to be on the court. That right there, that’s heart.”