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September 20, 2013

Charger Cross Country: Reis DeSantis

by Luigi Fabi

Reis DeSantis has been the long-standing favorite to do well amongst the cross country team this season for the Chargers. Due to having iliotibial band syndrome, his senior year of cross country has been put on halt. Iliotibial band syndrome, or commonly known as ITBS, is a common knee injury and is generally associated with symptoms of stinging sensation above the knee joint and swelling of the muscle around the femur while running or performing lateral movements.

DeSantis is the captain of the cross country team, and having him sidelined is a straining notion to the entire team. Even though he is incapable of running, DeSantis attends each practice and helps out with the team by suggesting methods and techniques or even keeping times for the players, something the entire team appreciates. Although he has been put on hold for several weeks, DeSantis is eagerly waiting his return on the tracks and maybe be able to attend the Twin City meet in late October.

The Centinal:  What are some of the emotions do you feel having to be put on a leave of absence in your senior year of cross country?

Reis DeSantis: It’s very hard for me to think about; I was very sad at first. Not being able to run sucks, but as time progressed, I just realized that there’s not much I can do and should just let time do its thing.

The Centinal: How has the competition been doing in light of your recent injury?

Reis: Seeing your competition progress as you just decay is a very harsh thing to come to. They’re getting better and better, getting new PR times, while I’m just waiting for a chance to get back on the field.

The Centinal: What are you doing to help with the cross country team while you are sidelined?

Reis: As Captain, even though I’m injured, I still try to attend each practice and support the team. Even if it’s something like keeping times for people, as long as I can help I’ll do it. I’ve been approached by a fellow teammate, and they said that they appreciate my being  there even though I’m hurt, which makes it all worthwhile.

The Centinal: When do you think you can be able to run again?

Reis: Honestly, it could be either a few weeks or several weeks. It’s all dependent on how it feels through recovery. Hopefully I can be back sooner than later, of course.

The Centinal: What have you been doing to increase recovery from your ITBS?

Reis: I’ve been rolling the muscle up and down with a foam roller so the muscle stretches and doesn’t tighten up. It’s actually extremely painful to stretch out, but as long as it’s helping me out, I’m doing it. Another thing I’ve been doing, which seems counterproductive, is doing nothing. Doing nothing and not hurting it even more is very helpful.

As the season progresses, DeSantis is hopeful to return but is leaving nothing to chance. He is diligently following doctors’ orders in recovery and believes the best thing he can do now is just let time do its healing. When DeSantis does take to the field once again, you can bet that the entire cross country team and many of the running enthusiasts following the sport are going to be happy that one of Champaign’s brightest running stars is back to form.

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