On the field you can see Saimara Cantras’ smile from a mile away.
She loves to play softball.
“I honestly love playing in the field, every time there’s a foul ball I just move cause I get excited,” Cantras said.
Cantras is the starting center fielder for the Spartans and playing the best ball of her career…
No suprise to her teammates and head coach.
“She’s just really strong and in the outfield she makes incredible plays,” said one of her teammates.
“She’s having a great year in centerfield any ball that’s hit in the outfield, I’m confident it’s gonna be caught if she’s out there,” said head coach Scott Aresco.
But late last spring Cantras wasn’t playing well. Her body was sore and she just didn’t feel right.
“I was getting out on like every play. I wasn’t fast anymore, and I knew something was wrong. I just didn’t want to say anything because I was like, ‘I’m playing softball this is my sport, and I don’t want to be out because I hate sitting out,” Cantras said.
“I said, ‘how can I recommend this kid to any college with an effort like that?’ I feel awful saying that now,” Aresco said.
So her mother took her to the hospital.
At first they thought it was mono, but the symptoms would not go away, and after another hospital visit she learned she had Lupus.
“I never knew what lupus was until I was diagnosed with it,” Cantras said.
Lupus is a chronic disease that occurs when your body’s immune system attacks your own tissues and organs.
“I was just so sad and depressed that I was diagnosed with something that. I just wanted nothing to do with it,” Cantras said.
But now she’s attacking the disease like she attacks the opposing pitcher.
“I was told that she was gonna be slower and maybe a little lethargic at some times, haven’t noticed yet,” Cantras said.
Cantras still has to go see her doctor once a month, and takes a half-dozen pills a day.
But none of that is slowing her down.