Some pain, all gain for linebacker

Tyler Weltich’s final season of high school football could’ve been over weeks ago.

Indian Creek’s senior linebacker tore his right labrum — the cartilage in the shoulder that allows a wide range in movement — reaching to make a tackle in the preseason scrimmage at Greensburg.

Surgery is being put off until the Braves’ season is over. In the meantime, Weltich is doing everything in his power to remain on the field.

“It’s my senior year. I’ve got to be there for my teammates,” he said. “It’s my last chance to have fun playing football. It’s been a blast.”

Weltich returned to football this season after not playing the sport since he was in eighth grade. He has 11 tackles for the Braves (4-2), who play at Cascade in a key Western Indiana Conference game on Friday.

Weltich takes 12 ibuprofen daily in an attempt to minimize any pain or discomfort caused by the torn labrum. Twice a day he uses 1- and 2-pound weights to strengthen the smaller muscles in his right shoulder.

He aggravated the injured shoulder in Indian Creek’s Week 2 loss to Greenwood, but he was back in the starting lineup in Friday’s 56-21 victory over Edgewood.

“Coming into the season we had high expectations for Tyler, not only as a player, but as a leader,” Braves coach Brett Cooper said. “He’s a fierce competitor and works hard every day to get back to the playing field.”

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Mike Beas is a sports writer for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at mbeas@dailyjournal.net.