Alexis Mokos' Love For Softball Endures Injuries, Challenges
Alexis Mokos hasn't had the picture perfect softball career that every player dreams of. She has faced numerous challenges since her college commitment back in high school, and continues to jump through hurdles as her time at Manchester University is nearing its end.
The craziness started for Mokos when she was forced to adjust her college choice just four months after committing as a catcher to St. Joseph’s College in Rensselaer, Ind. St. Joseph’s made the decision to close down due to financial issues, putting Mokos in an unsettling situation, as she wasn’t ready to walk away from the game just yet.
Luckily, her second choice, Manchester, still had an open spot on its roster.
“I reached out to the Manchester coach again, even though I told him I would no longer be coming to the school,” Mokos said. “I asked if there would be any chance that I would be able to have a spot on the roster because I would love to come there. He said yes, and that he’d love to have me.”
Things were getting exciting for Mokos as she was about to embark on a new journey, until a summer day in July changed her life.
Mokos ended up in a horrible car accident that led to three surgeries and caused her to miss the fall season of both her freshman and sophomore years.
“It was a very long recovery process,” Mokos said. “I broke my wrist and shattered it. I had a plate and eight screws put in during my first surgery, then my second surgery I had that hardware taken out. While it was being taken out they realized the styloid process on my ulna had never healed because it broke off. During this surgery, I had a bone graft done and had a plate and three screws put back in. The third surgery is when all hardware was removed completely.”
The thought of missing out on the collegiate student-athlete experience was upsetting for Mokos, but her teammates and coaches at Manchester still made her feel like a member of the team.
“They were very supportive and wanted to do anything they could to help me feel better physically and mentally,” Mokos said. “They still included me in everything and I always did what I could at practices to help with the flow of practice, or charting. (I did) anything I could do to be included without jeopardizing my healing process.”
Thankfully, her surgeries were planned out for her to recover during the fall semester so she could get playing time in the spring. She spent a lot of hours in physical therapy to be fully equipped to catch again.
“I spent time with an OT after my first surgery and then countless hours in the AT room after all surgeries,” Mokos said. “I have to stretch a lot more and I also get a lot of pain when it’s cold out.”
Her appreciation for softball and being active has grown exponentially for Mokos. Just when she was finally 100% healthy, she didn’t have long to prove herself on the field because COVID-19 ended up canceling her junior season.
“I appreciate (playing) a lot more because I know it can be taken away at any second,” Mokos said. “Whether it’s an injury or even a pandemic, it has made me appreciate all the hard work you put into it and everyone supporting you along the way.”
Now, several games into her senior season, Mokos leads her team with a .565 batting average and five doubles. But more than just achieving positive personal results on the field this year, she hopes to continue to make the most of her time in the game.
“I hope to make it to our conference tournament,” Mokos said. “I want to make as many memories as I can with my teammates.”