Batavia's Oroni still leading despite season-ending injury
Batavia senior quarterback Kyle Oroni is itching to get back and help his team any way he can.
It could come as soon as this Friday -- although without the football in his hands. Instead, he possibly could be on the sidelines for emotional support.
Oroni, Batavia's senior quarterback, was hurt late in the first half of the Bulldogs' eventual 21-19 win over St. Charles North last Friday. Oroni, flushed out of the pocket, was hit on a pass attempt. He confirmed on Wednesday that he suffered a fractured left fibula in his leg, ending his season.
Oroni left Friday's game for X-rays at Fox Valley Orthopedics where he learned the extent of the injury. watched the remainder of the game from the doctor's office. Oroni completed successful surgery on Tuesday, and is anticipating a recovery of 6-8 weeks.
"It is really hard to wrap my head around that obviously I won't be playing anymore, but I thought about what I brought to this team this last year, year-and-a-half," Oroni said. "It goes beyond just what I could do on the field. I think some of the most important things I bring to the team are leadership and being able to help coach the other guys around me."
"I'm really looking forward to continue those roles as a leader and sort of like an extra coach on the field," Oroni continued. "Helping guys practice, especially helping Trey [Urwiler] and the other young quarterbacks get ready for these next couple games coming up."
Oroni, a senior captain, ends a promising spring season going 20-for-26 for 276 passing yards and five touchdowns to one interception through 1 1/2 games. In 2019, where the Bulldogs made it to the Class 7A quarterfinals, Oroni threw for 1,451 yards and 17 touchdowns.
Oroni received messages of support on social media and following the game from teammates and other members of the community.
"It really meant a lot. These last three or four days, especially how long we've doing stuff working for [this season], it was really hard," Oroni said. "Seeing how many people were there for me, it's really kept me motivated. All I want to do is just go back and be with all those guys while I'm just sitting here and laying in bed."
" ... I know how much they mean to me," Oroni continued. "And how I much I mean to them."
Depending how this season unfolds, it could've shaped possible collegiate athletics options for Oroni. Currently, he plans to attend the University of Illinois-Champaign to study finance.
Batavia (2-0) faces Geneva (1-1) at Northern Illinois' Huskie Stadium on Friday night. It remains to be seen what the exact plan at quarterback will be, but Batavia does have options.
Urwiler, an NIU commit at receiver, handled most of the snaps after Oroni's injury and is the most likely projected starter. Sophomore-level quarterback JP Chaney did enter for some snaps in the fourth quarter last week as well.
"This week is kind of interesting," Oroni said. "Coach [Dennis] Piron is making these our little homecoming-spring break week. So, we're having a lot fun activities. I've seen some of the videos of the guys last night messing around. Tonight, we're doing a mini homecoming parade around the high school, so some special stuff like that are planned and it just really helps out during times like these."