Catasauqua Press

Saturday, July 22, 2017
Alexia Reichl winds and fires to home during a game from last season. Reichl isn’t sure she’ll be able to pitch again even next year and right now is just taking things a day at a time. Alexia Reichl winds and fires to home during a game from last season. Reichl isn’t sure she’ll be able to pitch again even next year and right now is just taking things a day at a time.

Reichl unsure if she’ll be back on mound

Thursday, May 11, 2017 by jeff moeller Special to the Press in Sports

In the early phases of the second game of the season against Notre Dame, Alexia Reichl was in a good position with a 7-1 lead and six strikeouts in the process.

The junior right-hander was headed toward another strong season ahead. Suddenly, though, Reichl felt her arm stiffen and couldn’t pitch.

“I didn’t have any feeling in my arm,” recalled Reichl. “My arm just became stiff and I had trouble moving it. I just couldn’t pitch anymore.”

Since then, Reichl has been sidelined from the mound and has been stationed at first base for the Roughies. Ironically, Catty lost Shannon Gallagher, its other hurler, also to an arm injury that has let her away from the circle all season.

It what once looked like a rebuild from a 19-win season a year ago quickly descended into a complete overhaul with two, young, inexperienced pitchers taking over the chores. The Roughies began the week with just two victories – both over winless Moravian Academy – and will look to put some pieces in place for next season.

“It has been disheartening for us,” said head coach Bobby Thomas. “Losing both pitchers has been very difficult. It is hard to imagine that this happened, but we have been coming along.”

Reichl, one of the returning veterans, never expected the current state, but remained positive

“We lost some people from last year, but we had a good core coming back,” she said. “It has been frustrating because we are used to winning. We only have won two games, and it is tough to understand.

“We have a number of young players who don’t understand yet how to win and what this program is about. They have to continue to improve.

“But we have been playing better. We still have the losses, but we are getting everything together.”

As for Reichl, she realizes her pitching career may be at the crossroads. Pitching since she was seven, Reichl has been dealing with the sudden derailment from an even more perplexing development.

“It’s been tough to deal with,” she said. “Pitching has been a big part of my life. I used to pitch a couple of times a week and also for my tournament team. I recently told my tournament coach that I wouldn’t be able to pitch. Everything just stopped at once.

“I have been going to see a doctor, but he really couldn’t help me. I don’t have any damage and there isn’t any type of surgery or treatment. There really isn’t anything that I can do right now.”

Reichl has been playing in the field and can hit. Yet, her practice swings need to be monitored.

“I can play first but my throws have to be limited,” she said. “I have to watch how I field and can take 20 to 30 reps with my bat.”

With the season winding down, Reichl is still optimistic to get back on the mound soon. However, she will compete again in cross country in the fall.

“I don’t know what to feel about pitching,” said Reichl. “I want to come back and I hope I can. I will be running in the fall and I’ll see what happens.”