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Madison County High School Sophomore Marah Bennett Named Piedmont Athens Regional Athlete of the Month

Athens, Ga. (June 10, 2024) — Madison County High School Sophomore basketball player Marah Bennett has been named Athlete of the Month by the Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Department at Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center. The award is given each month to a student athlete who has shown perseverance while dealing with an injury or illness. 

Bennett had ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) reconstruction surgery with Jonathan Payne, M.D., on her left knee in January 2024, ending her freshman year basketball season. Working with her rehabilitation team and Amy Hoyt, the athletic trainer at Madison County High School, Bennett committed to a treatment plan to improve her range of motion, the strength of the knee, and her gait; her goal being to return to playing basketball and her prior level of function.

"Marah shows determination and is motivated to perform her exercises outside of her therapy sessions,” said Hoyt. “She comes to see me often to work towards her goals, and she stays positive even if dealing with a setback.” 

There are four major ligaments in the knee that connect the femur (thighbone) to the tibia (shin bone), and when damaged, they may cause the knee joint to become unstable. The ACL is located in the center of the knee and controls the rotation and forward movement of the tibia. A torn ACL severely limits knee movement, including the ability to pivot, turn, or twist the leg. Reconstruction surgery restores stability and a full range of motion to the knee.

"Marah is a hard worker with a great attitude," said Hoyt. "She understands that recovery from ACL reconstruction surgery can take nine months up to one year. She’s about four months out from surgery, and she doesn’t complain or shy away from the exercises she’s asked to do.”

The Piedmont Athens Regional Orthopedic Sports Medicine team established the Athlete of the Month program to recognize the dedication of student athletes in the area.

"The athletes we work with are truly amazing and have to overcome so much in order to play sports again after an injury or illness," said Katie Terrell, athletic trainer and outreach coordinator for the hospital’s sports medicine program. "This award was developed to celebrate their hard work in our sports medicine rehab program. We’re excited about working with student athletes from middle school through college and into adulthood. Our athletic trainers and therapists have advanced training in sports medicine and are dedicated to keeping student athletes playing their sport."

As the Athlete of the Month, Bennett received a certificate and is featured in the Orthopedic Sports Medicine facility located on Piedmont’s Oconee Health Campus in Watkinsville, Ga.

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