Former Latrobe standout Austin Butler back to work after surgery |
Other Local

Former Latrobe standout Austin Butler back to work after surgery

Bill Beckner
Holy Cross Athletics
Latrobe graduate Austin Butler is second on Holy Cross with 12.7 points per game.
Latrobe’s Austin Butler (4) dunks over Butler’s Collor Ollio (24) in the third quarter of the WPIAL Class 6A quarterfinals on Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017, at Penn Hills.

The ball went through the basket — swish — and a smile curled up on the shooter’s face.

Yes, this is the stuff. How I’ve missed you, old friend.

Austin Butler was out of basketball for the last three months as he recovered from shoulder surgery. But the former Latrobe star and rising junior guard at Holy Cross got up a few shots Monday at a playground court for the first time since he went under the knife April 18. It was like a release of pent-up energy; the beginning of a return to full strength.

Butler, a former Patriot League All-Rookie selection who has started 53 of 64 games in two seasons in New England, played most of last season with a torn labrum.

“I tore my labrum completely, and my rotator cuff was frayed,” said Butler, a two-time WPIAL scoring champion who averaged nearly 30 points a game as a senior at Latrobe. He played through the pain last season as he delayed a diagnosis and, ultimately, the surgery.

“I played all season with it and knew something was up with it but waited until after the season to get it checked,” Butler said. “I am getting better each day.”

Butler started all 33 games last season and averaged 12.6 points and 4.1 rebounds in 34.5 minutes. He made 56 3-pointers, second most on the Crusaders (16-17).

The repaired shoulder should be less of a distraction now for Butler, who again is expected to be a key backcourt player come November.

He still likes to pull up from any spot at which he feels comfortable on the floor.

“No more discomfort every time I shoot,” Butler said. “And less fatigue.”

Butler will play for a new coach this season. After the retirement of Bill Carmody — who coached the Crusaders for four seasons and stalked the sidelines at various stops over four decades — former Marquette assistant Brett Nelson has taken over.

Butler said he is excited to play for Nelson.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Bill by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .

Categories: Sports | Other Local
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.