Just how good of a basketball player is Mountain View's Lisa Osguthorpe?
Let's see. She helped her team win three straight championships. She was last year's 5A MVP. And this year, she has been chosen as Ms. Basketball, an annual honor given by the Deseret News to the outstanding girls basketball player in the state.All those accomplishments, and yet, Osguthorpe rarely played to her full potential thanks to a recurring foot injury that's bothered her since 9th grade.
Born with an extra bone in her left foot, Osguthorpe tore the tissue that connected it to the regular bone and did it again just before her junior season, not allowing her to get into a good rhythm the entire year.
Osguthorpe's senior season started off great. She played two "awesome" games at the Tournament of Champions in Santa Barbara, according to Mountain Viewcoach Dave Houle, before the injury reappeared on a simple cut away from a defender in the Bruins final tournament game.
The BYU-bound Osguthorpe missed four games while rehabilitating the injury but didn't miss a practice, listening in on the scouting reports and riding a bike while her teammates ran the floor. Despite the rehab, the injury still bothered her the rest of the year.
"She played with a lot of pain the whole season," said Houle. "She was just an inspirational player even when she wasn't playing."
"It was hard not playing, but it probably happened at the best time," Osguthorpe said of the injury. "I felt really good about the state tournament because last year's experience helped me deal with my foot."
Osguthorpe found her rhythm at the best time - the state tournament. She scored 20 points in Mountain View's quarterfinal win over West Jordan and then racked up 22 points in a semifinal win over Skyline, earning a bit of revenge with the victory. She was a starter on the Bruins volleyball team that lost to the Eagles in this year's state title game.
"That was a tough loss, but I wouldn't trade that experience for anything," Osguthorpe said. "I ended my career with a state championship . . . but nobody can say I don't know what it feels like to lose."
Despite her strong tournament run, Houle felt that his star forward/guard was only 90-95 percent of her normal self. That was still enough to worry Rand Rasmussen, whose Bingham team lost to Mountain View in the championship game.Comment on this story
"We spent about 90 percent of our time trying to figure out what to do with her and finally said `forget it, we'll try and stop someone else,' " said Rasmussen. "With Lisa in the game, there is less pressure on the others in the game. I could use about four players like her."
Osguthorpe finally took care of that nagging injury, having had surgery performed on Monday to remove the extra bone and tissue. She'll be in a cast for the next 2-3 months before rehabbing again, and the next time she'll take the floor in a meaningful game will be at the Marriott Center.
So, just how good of a basketball player is Lisa Osguthorpe? Hopefully then, she will show us all.