Softball coach Peterson battles back after bout with illness

Feb. 25, 2013

Jonathan Toman
[email protected]

After his last round of testing, UCCS Head Softball Coach Scott Peterson has been fully cleared by his doctors.

Last April, after having severe headaches, Peterson was diagnosed with a brain tumor. It turned out to be benign, but an MRI last November showed the tumor had grown.

Though surgery to remove the tumor was successful, he was further diagnosed with an acute case of bacterial meningitis after the surgery. “That really set me back,” Peterson said.

While Peterson battled for his life, everyone around the softball program stepped up to help out. “We had great help from everyone in the department. It was just wonderful, sensational,” said Peterson.

“The athletic staff has been fully supportive,” said Assistant Athletic Director for Sports Information Jared Verner in an email.

Athletic Director Steve Kirkham served as first-base coach for the team through the first two weekends of games, thereby limiting the time Peterson would be on the field.

Various people, including Verner, have stepped in to Peterson’s other role as public address announcer for home UCCS basketball games.

Assistant Coach Don Pettrow was also key to get everything ready for the start of the season, as he took on additional responsibilities.

Former players and trainer Brian Hardy, who played baseball in college, also helped out during practices.

“I mean, look around,” said Peterson, referring to the army of helpers he had to clear snow from Mountain Lion Field for the games the weekend of Feb. 22.

Coach Peterson informed players before he went into surgery, and the goal during the whole process was to “minimize the impact on the athletes,” according to Verner.

“[The players] stepped right up,” said Peterson. “They made it very, very easy on us.”

Fully cleared, Peterson is now ready to take on both the challenges of wintry early season softball and his coaching duties.

“I’m really proud to work with this school,” Peterson said. “I’ve been here for 13 years, and I’ve never been prouder.”