Applebey makes her return to the court

The Register/Paul Wilcoxen

Mount Carmel's Kylie Applebey is double teamed in the post during Monday evening's varsity girls basketball game against Lawrenceville. It was Applebey's first high school game since tearing her ACL on Dec 1, 2016.

Paul Wilcoxen

MOUNT CARMEL - Kylie Applebey waited 347 days to wear her Mount Carmel Lady Aces uniform in a game.

On Dec. 1, 2016 - nearly one year ago - Applebey suffered a torn ACL. After surgery and rehab, Applebey was back on the court Monday to help lead the Aces to a victory over Lawrenceville.

"It felt pretty good to be back," said Applebey after the game. "It's actually gone really fast, to be honest. I was pretty torn up about it when I got hurt."

Applebey was one of four players for Mount Carmel to reach double figures. She scored 15 points and pulled down eight rebounds in three-quarters of action as the Lady Aces defeated the Indians, 78-27.

"At tip-off, I was really nervous," said Applebey. "After that I was fine."

Lady Aces' coach Tim Willis says he images there were some nerves from his senior and former all-conference player.

"I'm sure she had to be jittery," said Willis. "It's probably good she just gets it out of the way. [She ended with] 14 or 15, so that's pretty nice to come back."

Mount Carmel hasn't won a regional since 2014 when Applebey was in the eighth grade. She's hoping to help lead the Golden Aces to its next championship.

"As a team, we want to win regional and of course more," said Applebey. "All five [seniors] have been together since our eighth-grade year.

"Our team looked pretty good running those fast breaks. I think we'll be pretty good this year. All five of us [seniors] are really close, so that makes it really good."

In addition to Applebey, seniors on the Lady Aces' team include Haley Maguire, Kameron Kline, Lauryn Wright and Baylie Ray.

One aspect that Willis liked to see is Applebey's willingness to get on the boards and lead the team in rebounds.

"She had a ton of rebounds," said Willis. "There was that one stretch where it looked like she had six or seven in a row, which is big for us."

Applebey added that another one of her goals is the eclipse the 1,000-point mark, which she says she's close to doing.

Willis knows that the more Applebey plays, the more comfortable she'll get on the court.

"She'll get more and more comfortable, but I felt she looked very confident out there," said Willis. "She didn't seem to worry about it too much. Every game she plays, the worry gets less and less."

The next opportunity for Applebey and the Lady Aces to hit the hardwood for game action will be after Thanksgiving.

Mount Carmel will compete at the Lady Maroons Thanksgiving Invitational in Robinson.

The Aces open at 9 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 24 against Fairfield and then play again at 5 o'clock against Oblong.

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