There isn't much relaxing these days for Westerville North High School graduate Brittany Persaud. She is trying to return to full health by the time she begins practice for the Dayton women's soccer team later this summer.

There isn't much relaxing these days for Westerville North High School graduate Brittany Persaud. She is trying to return to full health by the time she begins practice for the Dayton women's soccer team later this summer.

Persaud signed a scholarship offer Feb. 7 to play with the Flyers, but has spent the better part of the last year rehabbing from a torn ACL.

For the past few weeks, Persaud has been practicing with the Blast F.C. under-17 girls team and the Blast F.C. U-18 boys team, both of which qualified to the Midwest Regional Cup in Rockford Ill., which was last Saturday through last Wednesday.

"I've started slowly bringing myself back," Persaud said. "It's just been going to therapy and to practice."

It was hardly the ending to her high school career she was hoping to have. Before her senior season, Persaud changed schools. She had been attending Westerville Central and moved to North for her senior year.

She was leaving a Central team that had lost 14 graduates after the 2006 season and was getting ready to build with unproven talent. North, on the other hand, was a program that appeared to be peaking. It had a core group that had been playing together for years and would have benefited greatly by the addition of a player who had made it to the state level in the Olympic Development Program.

But Persaud never played a game for the Warriors, who finished 12-4-3 and won a Division I district championship and the OCC-Buckeye Division title. She tore the ACL a few days before tryouts began last summer and hasn't played since.

At Dayton, Persaud will reunite with coach Mike Tucker, who also coached the ODP's under-16 Ohio South state team in 2006, a team Persaud played on as a sophomore. She also showed interest in North Carolina-Charlotte and Illinois, but the Dayton campus and the "family atmosphere" on the soccer team sealed the deal. It also didn't hurt that she had fond memories of playing for Tucker as a sophomore.

"It was always a good time and we got along well," Persaud said. "He was a good coach for all of us and he showed us a lot."

Tucker said he always has been impressed with Persaud's ability to be strong with the ball and outmuscle her opponents. She also has a strong leg, and it was that power that attracted Tucker most.

"A lot of her game is very powerful," Tucker said. "And yet she can finesse a ball. She kind of already knows the tricks that players don't know when they come in."

Tucker has provided Persaud a workout regimen to get her into shape when she reports later this summer.

Her conditioning, he said, is going to be the biggest concern since she will not have played in a game for over a year.

"I know she's doing the work right now," Tucker said. "It's been a long time since she's played at the highest level and coming in and playing at this level, and being a student, is going to be a big adjustment."

The last high school game Persaud played was for the Warhawks in 2006, a 1-0 loss to Thomas Worthington in a district semifinal. That loss was made more disappointing since Central was seeded fourth and Thomas ninth, and the Warhawks had beaten Thomas three weeks earlier.

The Warhawks finished that year 12-2-3 overall and were 4-1 in the OCC-Central to finish as a runner-up to Pickerington North (5-0).