After initial reports out of Chadwick were that Paden Gilbert would not play this season, coach Shawn Guerin announced this week the Cardinals will have the senior guard as soon as next week.
Gilbert has received clearance from doctors to play with a hand injury that will eventually require surgery.
“He’s been battling a hand injury for a year and a half and they were going to do surgery on it,” Guerin said. “But (Gilbert and his family) have put off surgery. (Doctors) will get him some steroid shots to get him through the season.”
Gilbert was an All-Mark Twain Conference First Team selection and the league’s MVP as a junior last season. He led the Cardinals to tournament titles at Fordland, Seymour and Spokane and the Class 1 District 4 championship.
Guerin had resigned himself to the fact he wouldn’t have Gilbert this season.
“We thought we had lost him,” Guerin said. “We thought maybe we could have him back later on in the season, but thought that was doubtful. When I got the news he can play now, we got him in here to get him ready to go. We’re so excited to get him back.”
Gilbert is currently working toward reaching the MSHSAA mandated 14 practices before seeing his first game action.
Chadwick is off a 3-2 start with a lineup that includes two freshmen.
“It’s been a blessing in disguise for these young guys to have to play,” Guerin said. “Now, they know they can play. It’s only going to make us better.”
Chadwick hosts Niangua and travels to Crane next week.