Tahlequah Daily Press

High School Sports

July 11, 2014

Playing through pain

Tahlequah's Chase Campbell playing football despite an injured shoulder

Chase Campbell has learned to play through pain for Tahlequah High School. The senior enters his final season with the Tigers with a lingering shoulder injury. Last season Campbell separated his shoulder on a tackle, but remained in the game choosing to endure the pain.

“Whenever I fell on the ground, I knew I broke it because I heard the bone crack,” Campbell said. “It was burning for a while and wouldn’t stop.”

On the fall, Campbell fractured a bone in his shoulder. The fractured bone would not stop Campbell from playing at defensive end for the Tigers though. “I do it for my team because I know they need me,” he said.

The bone in Campbell shoulder has healed for the upcoming 2014 season, but his labrum remains torn.

“It does not bother me too bad,” Campbell said. “It always lets me know that it is there though.”

Campbell will wear a shoulder harness to keep his shoulder in place throughout the 2014 season. Tahlequah football head coach Brad Gilbert admires Campbell’s toughness and the example he sets for his teammates.

“Some of the young men are able to see his example of playing through pain,” Gilbert said. “Football is a physical sport you have to play through aches and pains. There is no better example than him.”

The senior is a team player and gives a lot of credit to his teammates for his success on the field.

“I don’t want to take to much credit,” Campbell said, "because they are one of the main reasons I'm still playing football.”

Opponents tend to underestimate Campbell’s speed off the snap of the football.

“I use my size and speed to give me an advantage.” Campbell said. “When I match up with 300-pound kids they don’t expect me to come off the ball the way I do.”

On the field Campbell is always battling for his team until the whistle blows.

“He brings a motor that always runs,” Gilbert said. “He is extremely strong and quick for his size. He is an extremely hard worker. He is one of those kids that you can not run out of the weight room.”

Gilbert may play Campbell at offensive tackle in addition to defensive end in 2014. The toughness Campbell displays on the defensive side of the ball is exactly what Gilbert is looking for on the Tigers offensive line.

Campbell is excited for the season to begin. He wants to become more of a team leader as a senior and bring the team closer together.

“My goals are to help out my teammates in anyway that I can,” Campbell said. "Whatever my coach tells me to do I am going to do. You have to be coachable and listen. You have to be able to put your teammates before you to achieve the goals you want to achieve.”

A successful senior season to Campbell for the Tigers would be giving everything they have throughout the season.

“Playing our hearts out,” Campbell said. “Leaving it on the field knowing that we didn’t leave anything out there would be a success to me.”

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