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Saturday, September 30, 2023


Cougars help out ailing teammate

The UH baseball team finished battling through fall practices on Tuesday, but it is an off-the-field battle that has taught the team the most this offseason.

In September, freshman infielder David Murphy was diagnosed with leukemia and has since been going through chemotherapy treatments to treat his disease.

The team has put baseball to the side, and has rallied around Murphy in an attempt to help him through it.

"It’s an unfortunate situation for both David and for the team," head coach Rayner Noble said. "But some things in life you can’t plan for."

A Strike Out Leukemia benefit fundraiser for Murphy will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Ford Park in Beaumont.

The benefit will consist of a baseball camp for 7 to 18 year olds with an exhibition game to follow. Local college coaches and professional players such as Koby Clemens, Clay Buchholz, Jason Tyner will give instruction.

There will also be a silent auction where attendees can bid on a Roger Clemens golf day, autographed memorabilia and many other sports-related items.

Having a teammate go through a life or death situation at such a young age has also been a humbling experience for the rest of the team.

"For a guy who’s going through chemotherapy and all the things that he’s having to deal with, it’s very inspirational," Noble said. "Most of us have very little baggage compared to what he’s having to deal with."

Although Murphy has been distressed with the effects of cancer treatment, he has been with the team whenever possible and even participated in some of the intersquad games this fall.

"David’s been awesome through the whole thing," assistant coach Kirk Blount said. "He hasn’t missed a beat and he’s been here as much as he can. He’s one of the few guys that hit a homerun during our intersquads."

Murphy’s roommate, freshman pitcher Ty Stuckey, believes the situation has not only helped the team bond as teammates, but also spiritually.

"It’s brought us not only closer together as a team but closer to God," Stuckey said. "We’ve been having team prayers before and after every practice."

A part of the proceeds from the Strike Out Leukemia benefit will be donated in Murphy’s name to the Leukemia Society. For more information on the event, or to sign up for the camp, call Kristi Fuselier at (409 )617-5534.

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