Stress fracture to blame for loss of top scorer, rebounder

Thomas Gallick

The Kent State women’s basketball team announced the injury of junior center Anna Kowalska Saturday, one week after she scored a career-high 30 points at Akron.

The Flashes lose a powerful post presence in Kowalska, who suffered a stress fracture in her right foot, leads the Mid-American Conference in blocked shots per game (1.47) and sits in second place in the conference in points per game (17.8) and rebounds per game (9.1).

Coach Bob Lindsay said he has no set date for Kowalska’s return, but he expects her to play again before the end of the season.

“I can’t answer how long she’ll be out,” Lindsay said. “I doubt it will be six weeks. It will be a game-to-game decision.”

Kowalska came to America from Poland at age 13 and started playing basketball as a sophomore in high school. By her senior year she averaged 20 points and 20 rebounds per game.

She transferred to Kent State this year from John A. Logan College where she averaged a double-double.

Kowalska said she has never been sidelined by an injury before in her short basketball career.

“I was really disappointed and mad (when told about the injury), but I know I just need to work on my game and support my team,” Kowalska said. “This is the first time I’ve been injured and can’t play, so it’s even harder for me.”

Kowalska has eight double-doubles on the season and led the team in scoring a team-high 13 times.

Lindsay said the rest of the team will have to make up for Kowalska’s absence if they want to be successful.

“Players have to step up,” Lindsay said. “You have two choices in this situation: You can either fold up or try to make up the difference.”

Contact sports reporter Thomas Gallick at [email protected].