Scott Peck has been on quite an odyssey.
For the first time since early in his sophomore year, the Central Valley senior will play sports injury free.
Sometime during a preseason open gym two years ago, Peck injured his right ankle. Then five games into the basketball season, he had to stop playing.
“I don’t even remember anything specifically on how I may have hurt it,” Peck said. “I just felt this weird pain. I remember after the last basketball game I played that year, I could barely walk.”
This is where the exhausting journey begins. By mid-November of last year, Peck had seen five doctors before something conclusive was diagnosed.
After cutting his sophomore basketball season short, Peck went to see the first doctor. After an X-ray didn’t reveal anything, the doctor suggested physical therapy.
After three weeks there was no improvement, Peck said. He saw another doctor who suggested another round of physical therapy.
A month later there were no results.
“I was very frustrated,” Peck said.
Peck’s father suggested he wear a cast. But four weeks later Peck tried to run again and there was no improvement.
The Pecks knew where the pain was located. It was in the talus – the large bone in the ankle that connects to the leg and foot.
By this time, it was time for football. He got a cortisone shot.
“I didn’t have any other options,” said Peck, who measured 6-foot-7 and weighed 300 pounds a day before fall practice began two weeks ago. “I knew my junior season was one of the most important for recruiting. I needed video for colleges to see. I just had to get on the field.”
Peck conditioned with CV on a limited basis. When the offense went over plays for that week’s opponent, Peck would participate. But coach Rick Giampietri limited Peck’s overall time on the field until game day.
The mornings after games were difficult.
“They were very painful for him. He could hardly move,” Giampietri said.
“I favored it,” Peck said. “It was almost like playing with a peg leg. I couldn’t extend on my toes. I got it taped up and wore a brace every game.”
Peck made it through the season, earning first-team all-Greater Spokane League honors.
Then after the season, he saw two more doctors.
“They both examined it and they couldn’t find anything either,” Peck said. “It was incredible frustration.”
One of the doctors suggested Peck get a CT scan and take it to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
“I got the scan and we drove over to Seattle,” he said. “Within five to 10 minutes the doctor said he saw it.”
Peck had a fracture in the front part of his talus.
“The doctor said I was extremely lucky it didn’t break all the way through because it would have been career-ending,” Peck said. “I was mad that it took so long but, overall, I was relieved to find out what it was.”
So Peck returned home with surgery scheduled two weeks later. That meant he’d miss his junior basketball season.
The Pecks were driving over to Seattle for surgery when they got a call from Harborview. The doctor scheduled to operate had slipped and fallen, suffering a concussion.
So a week later, Peck met with another doctor. Surgery followed with a plate and six screws being inserted. The plate and screws will never come out.
Four weeks after surgery, he was placed in a boot. He was in the boot for another nine weeks. He sat at the end of CV’s basketball bench, serving as the team’s manager.
After getting out of the boot, Peck was allowed to begin light jogging for three weeks. That progressed to running and being able to do lower-body weight lifting.
He was cleared for Border League football camp in June. He also participated in two basketball tournaments and a team camp.
“It feels completely normal,” Peck said.
“It’s been a long time coming for that kid,” CV basketball coach Rick Sloan said. “I’m just hoping he can have a healthy senior year because he’s a kid that deserves it.”
A left tackle, Peck gave the University of Utah an oral commitment two days before fall practice began. He chose Utah over Washington State, Boise State, Eastern Washington, Montana, Nevada, Oregon and Washington.
“There were a few schools that had flashy clothes and facilities but I didn’t feel like I could build a family of brothers with my teammates and coaches at other places like I can at Utah,” Peck said.
Giampietri also plans to use Peck in spot duty at defensive tackle.
“He’s a force in there,” Giampietri said.
And it should be more evident this year than last since he’s finally healthy.
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