Patriots lose Newman for season

Published 10:43 pm Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Pike Liberal Arts Patriots will be without a valued member of their team for the remainder of the season.

Junior Dustin Newman cracked his T-5 vertebrae during a kickoff in last week’s game against Lyman Ward Military Academy.

The injury came just over three minutes into the contest. Newman was stabalized and carted off on a stretcher. He was taken for evaluation via ambulance.

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While head coach Steven Kilcrease is saddened to lose a player for a season due to injury, Kilcrease said he is relieved Newman will make a full recovery.

“Anytime you have an injury like that it concerns you as a coach,” Kilcrease said. “Obviously, I wish it hadn’t happened but I’m happy that it wasn’t any worse.”

Newman did visit practice Tuesday and has been fitted with a brace that he must wear for the next several weeks.

The Patriots will travel to take on Macon-East this week. Pike Liberal Arts defeated the Knights 40-7 last season but Kilcrease knows the region opponent will be much improved from a year ago.

“They’re going to be better,” the coach said. “They do a lot of the same things we do offensively and can score at any time.”

Aside from Newman, the Patriots will head into Friday’s matchup relatively healthy. Josh Starling hasn’t seemed to have any complication with his once injured ankle. The quarterback rushed for 31 yards in last week’s victory.

Kyle Boswell left practice yesterday with a pulled muscle in his back but Kilcrease didn’t feel it was serious.