SEMO QB Paxton DeLaurent suffers shoulder injury; “everything’s pointing that it’s over” for rest of the season

Paxton DeLaurent shoulder injury possibly season-ending
Published: Oct. 24, 2023 at 7:53 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 24, 2023 at 11:27 PM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - Early in the second quarter on Saturday against Tennessee Tech, Paxton DeLaurent exited the game with a shoulder injury. He did not return.

On Tuesday SEMO Head Coach Tom Matukewicz said the injury to DeLaurent’s AC joint will most likely require season-ending surgery.

“He’s got a doctor’s appoint on Thursday with a specialist and then another one on Friday with another specialist, so we’re just going to confirm everything,” said Matukewicz. “At this point it’s who’s going to do the surgery, what type of surgery. I think everything’s pointing that it’s over.”

Patrick Heitert will move into the starting quarterback role for SEMO.

The redshirt freshman started his first two games for the Redhawks in 2022 when DeLaurent was dealing with a foot injury. Heitert led SEMO to a 2-0 record during that stretch, including the OVC Championship-clinching win against Murray State.

Heitert 2-0 as SEMO Starting QB

After DeLaurent went down against Tennessee Tech on Saturday during the first play of the second quarter, Heitert stepped back into the lead signal caller role. He completed 12 of 14 passes for 179 yards and a touchdown, adding 21 yards on the ground and a rushing score. SEMO won the game 28-3.

Heitert says while the opportunity is unexpected, this is why you show up to practice every day and prepare like you were starter.

“It’s a bit more locked in for me,” said Heitert. “Got a little more eyes on me. Guys are looking to me for my leadership more than last week. Definitely a little more pressure, but it’s what I was made for.”