Western Washington University standout forward Jessica Bertucci will miss the rest of the season after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament in her right knee on Saturday, Oct. 25, in the final minutes of a 0-0 overtime tie with Central Washington. The MRI results were not available until late last week.
A junior from Bellingham where she graduated from Sehome High School, Bertucci is the leading scorer for the nationally ranked and unbeaten Vikings (15-0-3) with six goals and four assists for 16 points. She had started every game this season up to that point.
It is the second time during her three-year collegiate career that Bertucci has torn an ACL. She played in just five games as a freshman in 2012 before sustaining the same injury, also to her right knee.
“Our hearts break for Jessica,” said WWU head coach Travis Connell. “She has worked so hard to battle back from her first injury. She is a talented player that has been fantastic for us this year scoring goals, creating chances for her teammates and being a leader on this team.”
Last year as a sophomore, Bertucci played in 17 games, making four starts. She had four goals and three assists as WWU finished 20-2-1, the win total being a school record, and reached the NCAA II semifinals.
This year’s Vikings, ranked No. 14 nationally, clinched a third straight Great Northwest Athletic Conference regular-season title and will be the No.1-seed in the post-season GNAC tournament which starts Thursday, Nov. 6.
The 5-foot-8 Bertucci was twice a first-team Class 2A all-state choice at Sehome High.