Fracture could sideline Barger 3 weeks

November 02, 1990|By Bill Free

Second-year midfielder Joe Barger received another setback yesterday in his attempt to gain more playing time for the Baltimore Blast.

A bone scan showed that Barger, a product of Fallston High and Loyola College, has a stress fracture of the right fibula and tibia. He is expected to be out from two to three weeks, Blast assistant general manager Drew Forrester said yesterday.

Barger missed most of the home opener (13-9 victory over St. Louis Storm) Saturday night with an injury suffered when smoke got in his right eye during the team's new exploding dynamite opening ceremonies.

A disappointed Barger said last night: "I can't afford to get hurt. I'm trying to get playing time. My job is to come in and replace other players when they get hurt. I'm going to talk to Marty [McGinty, Blast trainer] tomorrow and see if I can play with this injury. As long as there is no risk of long-term damage, I want to play."

Barger, who has no points and five blocks this season during limited action in four games, said he first injured his right shin Oct. 12 in a preseason contest against the Cleveland Crunch.

The injury, he said, occurred when he slid into Crunch goalkeeper P.J. Johns' leg while going for the ball in front of the goal.

"It [shin] has been bothering me but I didn't want to say anything. I wanted to keep on playing. This is an important season for me with the Blast."

NOTES: Gov. William Donald Schaefer, whose birthday is tomorrow, will be the celebrity detonator tomorrow during the Blast's opening dynamite ceremonies before a 7:35 p.m. game against the Kansas City Comets.

The name of the Blast's new mascot, a construction worker who carries a detonator, will be announced tomorrow night. Fans were asked to choose a name and four people came up with the winner. The name of one of the four will be drawn for the grand prize (two 1990-91 season tickets) and the other three will receive four tickets to a game this season and an autographed soccer ball.

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