Unwelcome Present for Hounds' Davidson

By KBJR News 1

May 29, 2013 Updated May 29, 2013 at 10:55 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) --- Duluth East senior Hogan Davidson received an unwelcome early Christmas present this past winter, that being a lacerated spleen coming on Christmas Eve in a holiday tournament playing the Greyhounds boys' hockey team.

Since then, Davidson has been on a road to recovery.

"It's definitely the hardest thing I've ever been through in my life," Davidson said. "I bumped into a kid. He hit me right in the spleen. I ended up rupturing my spleen and a fourth-degree laceration."

The pain only increased when doctors told Davidson he was done playing hockey for the rest of his senior season.

"I was really down at one point, missing my senior year of hockey," Davidson said. "It's a sport I really love."

He wasn't about to leave the team, though, and spent the rest of the year as the Greyhounds' biggest cheerleader.

"I went to all the practices and skated around with them, just no contact," he said. "I went to all of the games and most of the road games and went to the state tournament with the guys."

Davidson got cleared to play full contact sports again on March 24. Since then, he's found himself as a starting outfielder for the Duluth East baseball team.

"He came in this year needing something to do," Greyhounds head baseball coach John Rudolph said. "He's a very active kid. Once he got clearance from the doctor, he's now gotten to the point where he starts at least every other game."

Davidson didn't play baseball until his junior year, a surprise that Rudolph was happy to welcome.

"Our question coming into the season was who was going to consistently play the outfield," Rudolph said. "His speed gives an outfielder that I wasn't counting on."

As for his spleen, Davidson says there have been no lingering effects, and he plans on spending next year back on the rink.

"I'm going to try and play junior hockey somewhere," Davidson said of his future. "Those are my plans."

They are plans, though, that Davidson hopes don't include any more Christmas Eve surprises.