WALKERTOWN, N.C. (WGHP) — This weekend a Triad girl took a major step on the road to recovery.

Samantha Kiger was hospitalized for months after coming down with the flu in October. Her health journey was a long one, but she’s back on her feet and getting back to doing the things she loves.

After waiting on the sidelines, Kiger was able to get back in the game on Saturday.

“Very inspirational. We didn’t know if she was ever gonna play again and now she’s back in six months’ time, so everything’s looking really good,” softball coach Justin Church said.

It’s Kiger’s third season on the Heartbreakers, part of the Walkertown Girl’s Softball Association. It was a tough road to get back to hitting the ball, a road that makes others in the organization emotional.

“Sometimes it brings me to tears just to think about what this family has gone through,” said Leslie White, the president of Walkertown Girl’s Softball Association. “First day of practice she came out and had her oxygen tank on wheels and she was up there batting and she pulled it right behind her.”

Samantha is off the lung transplant list, but she does still have a trach in. She was able to cap it in order to play this weekend.

“Her lungs are getting stronger; her leg is getting stronger from the nerve damage from the ECMO machine,” White said. “We’re very proud of her. She’s come a long way.”

Samantha’s mom and best friend were by her side along with a crowd of people ready to watch her do what had been previously unthinkable. She had a stool nearby in case she needed to sit down in between pitches, but everyone was all smiles.

Her mom wanted to thank the Walkertown Girl’s Softball Association for all their support of Samantha and says that she’s doing great on her road to recovery. They’re hoping her trach can be removed by August.