What was supposed to be a normal practice quickly came to a halt. As the boys basketball team ran through their everyday practice drills, junior Alex Suarez was in the middle of a practice game when he tried to step pass junior Jaylx Hunt, but his feet were unable to fully catch up with the rest of his body. He was not able to plant his feet all the way on the ground, causing him to fall and roll his ankle.
“I never fully got my foot on the ground so it turned very awkwardly,” Suarez said. “I couldn’t even really [play in the past two games] because it hurt too much to run laterally, or even run in general.”
As a co-captain, Suarez is not only there to help the team off the court with giving his teammates advice and words of encouragement, but he is also there because he is helping his team on the court and the players like junior Harrison Nash noticed how different it was to play without him.
“[Him not being there] impacted us [the most] at the game against Deltona because we did not feel his presence as much since he’s such a source of leadership [while we play] and his production on the court and efficiency were missing and it hurt us but we just had to learn how to make those kind of adjustments,” Nash said.
With his team left out on the court to play without him, Suarez had to step up as a co-captain and do whatever he could to help his team from the sidelines.
“I feel like [getting injured helped] with being a co-captain because I could focus and pay attention more to the game and tell [the players] what I saw from the sidelines on what they could improve on,” Suarez said.
After his injury, the coaches have been doing all they can to help Suarez get ready to play for the rest of the season, slowly allowing him to play for a few minutes each game.
“[Alex] played briefly in both of our games but he couldn’t play, like I mean he really couldn’t play he just wasn’t all there with his ankle yet,” assistant coach Steven Frick said. “[At practice to help] we do certain exercises where we try to do jumping exercises to try and strengthen not only the ankles but also around the knees.”
As the basketball season kicks off, Suarez will hopefully recover soon and join his teammates. No matter what, his teammates still feel his presence on the court and can’t wait for him to play again.