Jessica Díaz’s torn ACL and sprained MCL

It was the last game of the SLO Tri-Tip 7’s tournament. We had already had three games and done several warm up drills. We brought it in to hear what our coach Nigel had prepared for us. He gave us some pointers and things we can work on as an individual and as well as a team. We were finally able to get on the pitch and start playing what we had left in us. We were off to a good start and had scored several tries.

How it Happened

When the injury happened it was early in the second half of the game and I had the ball. I was getting ready to pass it to my left when a girl from the opposing team tackled me. I felt my right knee turn right and my ankle turn left. It was then I heard my knee pop loudly as I was falling to the floor.

female rugby player cartoon


Position: Prop
Club: San José Seahawks
Injury: Torn ACL, Sprained MCL

I lost the ball and the girl got possession of the ball. My teammates kept playing until the whistle was blown. They gave me my space so our coach could see if it was anything serious.


One of guys in our club is a chiropractor and he was able to check my knee out on the pitch. He started moving my knee around to see what hurted and how bad it was. He immediately told me that I tore my acl. After a few minutes my coach helped me off the field. I was able to get to our tent and started to elevate it and ice it. After about 1 hour of icing it I had a teammate help me to my car and I eventually ended up getting crutches later on that night. We ended up losing the game but it was pretty close and I am proud of how we played that day.

MRI Findings

The next day I had gone to get x-rays done and there was nothing wrong so they scheduled an appointment to see the sports therapist. When I saw the sports therapist she requested an MRI and told me she didn’t want to jump the gun about options for healing but would further discuss it after the MRI findings.


The week after the incident, I had gotten the results of the MRI and they let me know that I had torn my acl and sprained my MCL. The next step is physical therapy before my surgery, which is in a few weeks, and after. As of right now I am doing my own physical therapy as I am trying to strengthen my knee as much as I can before surgery so I can have a better recovery.

Returning to Rugby

As impatient as I am I already want to get back on the pitch but I know I need to take care of my body first. I love rugby and the culture of it. I hate that this injury is going to make me miss the upcoming 15’s season but I know I will come back stronger!

By Jessica Díaz

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