Lemke Back In Action

Two Harbors Senior Makes Stellar Return To Court

Two Harbors senior forward Ayla Lemke has a bright future.

Lemke explains, “Basketball is just a thing for my family. I don’t know how else to say it.”

Teammate and co-captain Brianna McGrath says, “She brings a lot to the team, she’s always positive no matter what is going on.”

She committed to play basketball at Concordia St.Paul earlier this year.

Lemke comments, “I’m really excited for the area, the teammates are all super nice, the coach is the best. I’m just super excited all around.”

Just a few short months earlier, her future seemed anything but stable.

Teammate and co-captain Alyssa Ruberg remembers, “When we found out what happened we were all in shock. No one wanted it to be true.”

Last December, she tore her medial meniscus in her right knee.

Ayla’s father and Head Coach Chris Lemke remembers, “When something like that happens to your child. It almost feels like it happens to you.”

Lemke adds, “If I could go back, I don’t think I’d take back my injury. That might sound crazy, but i learned a lot through it.”

Her injury cost her the rest of her junior season.

McGrath says, “She was in a wheel chair and she was about to jump out of it because she was so excited for all of us.”

Lemke adds, “Yeah I missed a season, but I learned things that I can take with me forever.”

After a long recovery, she’s back and in style; she currently leads all northland girls in points scored.

Lemke comments, “The first couple of games were not anything like now. So I mean it did take, almost an AAU season to get my feet back under me.”

What she really cares about is making the most of her senior season.

Lemke remembers, “It feels like forever ago that I wasn’t on the court, but I have to remind myself that it was just last year.”

Ruberg adds, “It’s so cool, it’s so fun being able to play with such a good friend, and we’ve gotten really close in the last eight years playing basketball together so it’s really nice.”

Fondly playing with the team that gave her hope when her world seemed darkest.

Lemke says, “We’re seven games in and I’m thinking about how this is one third of the season it’s crazy, it’s absolutely crazy. I’ve been waiting, I don’t know, a year to get back on the court for real games, now that they’re here it’s just going by so fast and i just want it to slow down.”

Chris Lemke comments, “What a crazy world. You know she just kind of put here time in kind of fell in love with it. She wasn’t in love with it, she fell in love with it.”

Lemke adds, “I know that in a second it could be gone… So.”

Ayla, closed 2016 on a high note- scoring her 1000th point Friday, as Two Harbors beat Duluth Marshall in their tournament championship game 65–52.

Categories: Features, High School, Northern Star, Sports