MOUNT VERNON — Mount Vernon quarterback Brady Ketchum had quite a scare during the summer.
In the first inning of a game at Dyersville on June 11, a line drive came straight back at Ketchum and caught him square in the face.
He dropped to the ground as coach Ray Reasland went running onto the field. Brady’s father, Dan, yelled for someone to call the ambulance.
“I didn’t say anything,” catcher Clark Youngreen said. “I was in shock, very scared and had no words. It looked like he was dead.”
The paramedics ended up driving to the wrong field, so it took 15 minutes to arrive. While waiting for the ambulance, Ketchum tried to get up, but could not move his body.
He was loaded onto a stretcher and taken to an emergency room in Dubuque. No bones were broken, but he did have a severe concussion.
After about four hours in the hospital, Ketchum was able walk around again. He has no recollection, however, of what happened between getting hit by the ball and waking in his hospital bed.
After the injury, Ketchum had to wear a protective mask while pitching. He said every time a ball comes back toward him, his stomach drops a little.
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“I got really lucky to come out of it how I did,” he said. “They said I should have fractured bones in my face and knocked out a couple teeth.”
He said the injury to his head was quite severe, but it will not affect his football season.
Although the Mustangs are 0-3, Ketchum has completed 55 of 96 passes for 529 yards and three touchdowns. He has a quarterback rating for 105.6.
The Mustangs host Maquoketa on Friday.