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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Injury takes golf senior Prouty out till January

    Redshirt senior Brian Prouty balances a golf ball on his club in the McKale Center putting room yesterday.  Prouty underwent wrist surgery Sept. 12 and hopes to return to the Wildcats in December.
    Redshirt senior Brian Prouty balances a golf ball on his club in the McKale Center putting room yesterday. Prouty underwent wrist surgery Sept. 12 and hopes to return to the Wildcats in December.

    It was a disappointing opening weekend for the Arizona men’s golf team.

    Not only did the No. 13 Wildcats finish 11th of 21 teams at the William H. Tucker Intercollegiate last weekend, but the slow start was particularly tough to watch for one spectator, redshirt senior Brian Prouty.

    Prouty, a Pacific-10 Conference All-Academic second-team selection last season, underwent wrist surgery Sept. 12 and will be out until December at the earliest.

    “”It’s hard to watch and not be able to help,”” said Prouty, who traveled with the team to Albuquerque, N.M., for their opener.

    He tore cartilage in his left wrist, an injury he believes must have occurred while hitting a shot sometime last year. Though he did not notice the injury at the time, continual play and practice over the summer eventually led to a complete tear of the triangular fibrocartilage complex, or TFCC.

    The TFCC is known as the “”wrist meniscus”” because it functions in a very similar fashion to the meniscus in the knee. When he found out the injury would require surgery, he was very disappointed.

    “”Especially being my last year, it’s tough,”” Prouty said.

    Because he has already used a redshirt year, he has no other choice but to rehab and come back midseason.

    “”Unfortunately, it’s one of those injuries that requires 100 percent healing before you’re ready to go,”” Prouty said.

    Prouty will rehab with the UA training staff and is targeting a late November return to practicing. He plans on playing in some amateur tournaments around the state as a part of his rehab and hopes to return to the team in the spring season, which starts on Jan. 22. Arizona does not have any tournaments scheduled in December.

    Prouty’s teammates recognize his importance to the team.

    “”I think Brian’s a big, vital asset to our team in terms of golf as well as his personality,”” junior Travis Esway said.

    Although a serious wrist injury would seem worrisome for a golfer with professional aspirations, Prouty is in good company as he prepares for a comeback. Former UA golfer Jim Furyk had a similar surgery early in 2004 and has since won three PGA tour events. Furyk also recently competed in the Ryder Cup and upon its conclusion donated $120,000 to his alma mater.

    Because of Furyk’s example, Prouty is confident about his own recovery.

    “”He just played in a Ryder Cup, so I figure you can always come back as good, if not better,”” he said.

    Another reason for optimism is Prouty’s reputation as a quick healer.

    “”Prouty’s known for being a good rehabber,”” said UA assistant coach John Knauer, citing his faster-than-expected return from an ankle injury two years ago. “”Everybody in the training room was very impressed with his diligence, and we expect him to do the same thing.””

    In the meantime, Prouty finds himself with extra time on his hands, an enviable situation he has not experienced often during his four years as a full-time student and nearly full-time golfer. Forced to delay graduation until May in order to maintain his eligibility for golf, he has already completed the requirements for his major in economics and his minor in pre-law.

    He plans to fill the time void by studying for his two online classes, catching up on sleep, and putting one-handed, which he says is actually good for your stroke.

    Although still wearing a hard cast, Prouty is already chomping at the bit in anticipation of rejoining his teammates on the course.

    “”I’m just anxious to get back,”” he said. “”I’m going to get back as soon as the doctors let me.

    “”That’s my goal.””

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