A fractured season

Senior injures arm at baseball game, out for the season


Rachel Lewis

Senior Zack Philips pitches in the baseball game against Evangel.

Story by Tyler Snell, print co-editor-in-chief

As the fastball slams into the catcher’s glove, the pitcher feels pain up and down his arm. But he has to fight through. It’s in the second inning with two outs, and this batter could be the last one. He throws two quick curveballs with gritted teeth and tears forming in his eyes. But the batter struck out; the inning is ended.

For senior Zack Phillips, this scenario became all too real for him when he fractured his ulna after a pitch in a game versus the Marshall Mavericks on March 29.

“I was just thinking what’s going to happen to me next [and] what’s really wrong with me,” Phillips said. “I kept asking myself is this what I’m feeling a fluke, or is it really going to cause me to be out like I was this summer.”

During summer league play in 2015, Phillips incurred a stress fracture in his left elbow while pitching. In the game against Marshall, Phillips knew something was wrong but wanted to continue to fight for his team.

“I wasn’t going to pull myself right off the mound then,” Phillips said. “I wanted to get the guy out, [and] I ended up getting the guy out, but I knew I was done from there.”

Phillips received a scholarship to play baseball at Seminole State College, but he feels that this injury will not prevent him from following his dream of playing college baseball.

“I was worried about how this would affect my college career, but my doctor assured me that I will be ready in the fall,” Phillips said. “So I’m not worried about how college will be. I will come back stronger and more ready than I ever have before.”

In order to repair the fracture, Phillips must get surgery and start the rehabilitation process.

“The next step in recovery after my surgery is to put on more weight and get stronger,” Phillips said. “I’ve got to fix my mechanics and just hopefully come back throwing harder for college.”

Phillips is sad to be off the field, but he plans to use this injury to support his team from the dugout and to be a voice of encouragement during each game.

“I really wanted to be out there on the field with my teammates and push for that state title,” Phillips said. “All I can do now is support [them] in the dug out which I will do at every single game and wish for the best for my team.”