Tim Dumas has been living in his own house of pain this season.
The Augusta Stallions offensive specialist has suffered four injuries this season. Yet, the 5-foot-10, 170-pounder hasn't missed a game.
"I'm a little banged-up with the shoulder," Dumas said, referring to his latest ailment. "But I've just got to suck it up and get ready for the Macon game."
The Stallions will play host to the Knights at 7 p.m. Saturday in their last regular-season arenafootball2 game at Augusta-Richmond County Civic Center.
Dumas separated his right shoulder two weeks ago, when Augusta lost at Roanoke 57-52. Despite the injury, he set Stallions records for most receptions in a game (14) and most receiving yards in a game (169).
Dumas' injuries started in Week 1, when he dislocated his thumb. Since then, he's played with a tender hamstring and a hurt hip.
"He has played through a lot of pain," Augusta coach Mike Hold said. "He's taken a beating over the last several weeks with a separated shoulder. That says a lot for his character, that he's still out there going."
While Dumas physically has taken a beating, his stats have improved. The 22-year-old is fifth in the league with 100 catches for 1,178 yards and 23 touchdowns.
A Philadelphia native, Dumas played wide receiver and defensive back at Archbishop Ryan High School, on a team that preferred running the ball. After making 12 interceptions his senior year, Dumas watched college offers trickle in from Division I-AA teams to Division III teams.
"They all brought me in for recruiting trips and said, 'You're too small for us. Your stats are great, but we don't know if we can take a chance on a guy your size,"' he said.
The private Division III Lycoming College did take a chance, and reaped the rewards as Dumas helped lead the school to an appearance in the 1997 national championship game. In his final two seasons, Dumas caught 130 passes for 2,237 yards and 22 touchdowns.
"I worked my way up from the bottom," said Dumas, whose younger brother will play at Lycoming this fall. "I showed I could play in that league. Now here I am again working at the bottom in arena2."
Dumas is continuing to make adjustments because he never played on artificial turf during his collegiate career. The walls can be a little too close sometimes, and the turf a little unforgiving - thus leading to his numerous bumps, bruises and scrapes. Through it all, he enjoys it.
"I like the arena game," he said. "It's fast-paced. You really have to think on the run, which I like to do. The fans are right on top of you. They're either supporting you or bashing you when you're away. And I like playing to the crowd."
NOTES: The Stallions will hold Fan Appreciation Knight on Saturday. Starting at 5 p.m., the team will have a tailgate party in front of the civic center. During the game, the Stallions will give away a spa and a recliner, along with a chance to win a car and a truck. ... A limited number of Stallions jerseys from the 2000 and 2001 seasons will be available during a silent auction at the game. ... Season tickets for the 2002 season are on sale now. Call (706) 738-9539 for more information.
Reach Chris Gay at (706) 868-1222 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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