Being a student athlete comes with many challenges -– but besides balancing school work and practice for one sport, KSC junior Jeff Lunn balances two sports on top of recovering from a back injury this year.
As a baseball pitcher and basketball forward Lunn said when deciding which sport he wanted to play in college he, “ just couldn’t live without one or the other.” Lunn had the option to play Division II baseball, but could not part basketball yet.
When it comes to time management Lunn said, “I try to get ahead on assignments that way I have time for my sports. Sometimes, it’s difficult for some assignments, so it does get stressful, but that will happen and I just deal with it.”
Although things may get stressful, Lunn’s teammates say you would never know.
KSC junior and outfielder Zach Rollins said, “He brings the team life.”
“I don’t know about basketball, but him and I try to keep everyone light. We dance all the time, we just try to keep everyone’s spirits up, he’s funny he has good chemistry with the team and he keeps everyone together,” Rollins said.“He always tries to pick everybody up for baseball if they have a bad outing, he’ll always be the first one to shake their hand or give them a little pep talk you just try to cheer them up like ‘you’ll get them next time’ and all that stuff. He’s always positive, he’s never really down on anyone or himself it’s good to have that positivity around.”
Head basketball coach Ryan Cain agrees.
“He is a very composed person, leadership-wise I think he always stays level headed and he always is into it, he’s a very positive person, he doesn’t get caught up in the moment and it really helps out our team. We stayed together despite some of the issues that we had. He’s one of those guys for us that stays level headed,” Cain said.
Despite Lunn’s positive attitude and tremendous work ethic, one thing his coaches, for both sports, stress is for him to be honest about his health. Back in January, Lunn had a herniated disk in his back and had to rest for a majority of the basketball season. Now with baseball season deep into playoffs, Lunn has had little time to rest. and heal his injury.
KSC pitching coach Marty Testo said the only thing you have to ask Lunn twice is how he’s feeling.
“Basically what you have to ask Jeff about is how is his body feeling, how is his health, and what I ask is for him to be honest with me because I know he has had some ailments because he is a two sport athlete, and there’s no time off for Jeff he just goes goes goes. So we have to be careful when we first get him and recover from basketball but then get his arm in shape and ready to pitch it’s a process, but he’s throwing his best right now. We’re excited to have him and we still have one more year left with him,” Testo said.
Testo said that although he’s healing they still have to be careful.
“Even the other day he had some issues with his back so we have to be careful with him, I love Jeffrey but he’s 21 going on 40. What he gives you on the mound are strikes consistently and you can’t ask for more.”
When asked which sport he likes better, Lunn said he likes basketball when it’s basketball season and baseball when it’s baseball season. Whatever the season may be Lunn said he gives each sport his total dedication.
“Obviously, the two differ in their makeup, but I try to bring the same amount enthusiasm for each sport,” Lunn said.
Kendall Pope can be contacted at Kpope@kscequinox.com