Moss setting up the Hampton 'Point of Attack'

By Matt Hill
STAR STAFF
mhill@starhq.com

   Josh Moss is treasuring this moment.
   The starting point guard on the Hampton basketball team is taking advantage of the opportunity given to him after having an athletic career that's been filled with injures.
   The injury that really put a damper on his athletic promise happened his sophomore year, when he tore his ACL in a football game.
   That event made Moss think twice about playing football, and made him realize how much he loved basketball and baseball.
   "I kind of like to try everything," Moss said. "Part of me wanted to play football again (after the injury), but I was really afraid of losing basketball and baseball completely.
   "I kind of got turned off from football, but I don't regret playing. But it made me realize what I could have lost. I realize how hard I had to work to get back to where I am now."
   After the football injury, the long road back began for Moss, who is now a senior.
   Moss knew he was going to miss basketball his sophomore season, but he didn't want to miss baseball.
   Moss hit around .500 as a freshman, but it was hard to tell whether or not he would be on the diamond for his sophomore campaign.
   He made it back, and hit over .400 for the second year in a row.
   But Moss admits it took a lot of hard work to make it back to baseball.
   "It's a hard injury to recover from," Moss said. "Everybody doesn't realize the rehabilitation it takes to get back to the sports you want to play."
   According to Moss, he still wasn't fully recovered at that time.
   "I put in about four months of physical therapy," Moss said. "I didn't feel comfortable on it until the next basketball season."
   Moss came into his junior year hoping to be free of injures. But around baseball season, trouble struck again.
   "The first of the year I suffered an ankle injury in the preseason, and I missed the first week and a half of the season," Moss said. "Then during the last three weeks I came down with mono. The last game I played was when we beat Elizabethton."
   All of this is what makes Moss' senior year so special. Moss is finally completely healthy, and is ready to contribute both on the basketball court and on the baseball field.
   "It's an opportunity, and I want to make the most of it," Moss said. "I've put a lot of work into therapy. It's just now getting to where I feel comfortable with my knee and everything."
   Moss won the job as the Bulldogs' starting point guard in the preseason. But the way Moss won it hit home with him.
   The Bulldogs were counting on top-notch performer Kevin Harrison to be their point guard, but Harrison tore his ACL during football season.
   Harrison is currently out of action, so Moss can sympathize with what he is going through.
   "It's kind of a shame you get a position like that," Moss said. "It makes you feel worse. It was bad enough for me my sophomore year, but when it happens to somebody their senior year, I can't imagine what it's like."
   Everytime Moss reads a story about a person recovering from an ACL injury, it makes him stop and think about what he went through two years ago.
   "I respect everybody that has been through it," Moss said. "It's kind of inspirational to come back from an injury. It makes you want to encourage people like Kevin and keep them in high spirits."
   Moss is hoping to help the Bulldogs turn their season around in the next few weeks. Moss feels he has some work to do in his game, but believes things will get better for him and for Hampton basketball.
   "I've got a lot of improving to do," Moss said. "We've got to come out and play as a team. We may not win many games at the start, but if we play hard and work hard like I know we can, then we should come out with a few victories."
   Even though Moss has his mind set on basketball at the moment, he thinks baseball is the sport where he shines the most.
   "I've played it since I was six," Moss said. "That's my sport. I would like to go to the next level and play."
   Overall, Moss is happy about his athletic career at Hampton High School.
   "I could have done a few things better, but I couldn't have asked for any better of a time than playing for Hampton," he said.