David Geno started his summer with a dazzling performance on the soccer field in Seattle. He’ll spend the rest of it trying to get back in playing shape.
East Tennessee State’s star striker is recovering from surgery for a “Jones fracture” to the outside bone of his left foot. He suffered the injury in early May while playing for the Seattle Sounders U23 team in a match in British Columbia.
“There was nobody around me,” Geno said Wednesday. “I jumped up for a header and came down and didn’t even land on it funny, just flat. I felt something pop and actually thought a stud on my cleat had broken at first.”
The injury generally has about an eight-week rehab period, which would put Geno back on the field near the time the Bucs start camp on Aug. 14.
“It was bad timing but good timing,” he said. “If something like this was going to happen, it’s better that I have all summer to rehab and get back. It could have cost me my senior season.”
The Dobyns-Bennett product led the Atlantic Sun Conference in scoring last season with 30 points — 11 goals and eight assists. Geno has 60 points in his career at ETSU and already owns most of the scoring records.
He had made quite a splash in his first appearance with the Sounders, scoring four goals in just 19 minutes of a U.S. Open Cup match. The stop in Canada was a tuneup for a second-round match in the tournament in Charlotte the next week.
Unfortunately, Geno never made it to Charlotte.
“I couldn’t have asked for a better situation— great team, great coaches and players, great setup. It was perfect,” he said. “It’s always cool, even at ETSU, when you get guys together from all over the country and other parts of the world. Having those kind of players around you makes you better, and it makes you want to work that much harder.”
Geno is currently walking on crutches and has his left foot in an orthopaedic boot. He’s been able to do some range-of-motion exercises in the pool but not much more.
The room service at his parents’ house in Kingsport dropped off a while ago, he said.
“That only lasted about a week,” he said. “They’re like, ‘You can handle yourself now.’ ”
n Kerry Doane picked up the first victory of his professional career in relief Tuesday night.
The right-hander from Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., got the decision for the Mahoning Valley Scrappers with three innings of scoreless relief against the Auburn Doubledays.
Doane has now pitched five innings in two appearances for the Scrappers, the Cleveland Indians’ affiliate in the New York-Penn League, allowing no runs and just three hits.
Doane was a 29th-round pick of the Indians in the draft earlier this month after finishing his sparkling career with the Bucs. He was the Atlantic Sun Conference pitcher of the year, tying a school record with 13 wins and leading the nation in complete games and innings pitched.
n The only other former ETSU player still active in the minors, reliever Chas Byrne, opened his summer with three straight victories before getting roughed up Tuesday night.
Byrne, pitching for the Lexington Legends of the South Atlantic League, only got one out in the bottom of the ninth before surrendering both runs in a 2-1 loss to the Hickory Crawdads. The Legends are the Kansas City Royals’ Class A farm team.
Byrne sat out last season after undergoing Tommy John surgery. He has appeared in 14 games this summer, with a 4.73 ERA in 26.2 innings pitched. He has allowed 32 hits while striking out 15 and walking 13.
n Thomas Stadium will host an Appalachian League game for the first time Friday night when the Johnson City Cardinals face the Bristol White Sox.
It’s the first of two dates at the two-year-old stadium this season for the Cards, who were off to a 5-1 start heading into Wednesday night’s contests. The Elizabethton Twins will visit on July 26.
New ETSU football coach Carl Torbush will throw out the first pitch for Friday night’s game, and several in-game promotions are planned.
Tickets are $10 for reserved seats, and $5 for seats down the lines.
n Paul Hoilman, the former star first baseman for the Bucs, is conducting a baseball camp next month with a little help from his friends.
Caleb Moore, Matt Rice, Dylan Pratt and Bo Burton are also planning to staff the camp at Broyles Field on the Liberty Bell complex from July 22-25. Instruction in all aspects of the game will be offered each day from 8:30 a.m. to noon.
All campers will receive t-shirts, and trophies and awards will be given.
Registration is limited and ends July 7 at midnight. Register online at www.paulhoilman.com.