HS SOFTBALL: Holy Cross slugger Mia Galella to miss remainder of season with UCL injury

Mia Galella, one of the Lackawanna League’s big sluggers, suffered an injury and will miss the remainder of her junior softball season.

Holy Cross’ powerful, hard-hitting first baseman started feeling discomfort in her throwing arm. After a visit to the Rothman Orthopedic Institute in Philadelphia and consultation with Michael G. Ciccotti, MD, she and her family learned her injury is a Grade 2 UCL tear.

The immediate treatment is to rest for six weeks, and then Galella will have another evaluation. While the prognosis is “cautiously optimistic,” if there is not significant progress in a recovery, she will need Tommy John surgery, her father, Tom Galella, said.

“My mindset is that things could always be worse,” Mia Galella, 17, said. “I will be back stronger. It is not the end of the world, and I will stay positive and continue to look on the brighter side.

“I have to support my team now and have some fun with them. I have to look at the bigger picture. I am a pretty optimistic person. I am going to be able to play in my senior year and in college. That makes it a lot easier.”

Before her setback, Galella, a junior who already committed to Boston College, had a .517 batting average with 15 hits, 18 runs, 17 RBIs and three home runs this season for the Lady Crusaders.

“At the beginning of the season, I had a little bit of pain, but it just kept getting worse, and it really hurt when I threw,” Galella said. “I really started to get worried because the pain killed me when I swung the bat, and my arm would just give out. It hurt so bad. I couldn’t move my arm, so I took some time off, and I do have a serious injury.”

As an all-state and All-Region player as a sophomore, she had a .471 average with eight home runs and 36 walks in 81 plate appearances and had 24 hits, with 16 going for extra bases. She also had a 1.311 slugging percentage and a 2.076 OPS.

In addition to her all-state efforts with the Lady Crusaders, Galella has excelled as a member of the VA Glory travel team.

She also made headlines in November when she signed a Name, Image and Likeness agreement with Athletic Republic, a national training franchise located in Moosic, as a brand ambassador, the company announced on Instagram.

“We had a talk, and I told her that any time you are in pain, you have to let people know,” her father said. “She didn’t want to let her team down, and she felt like she could work through the pain. She had a hard time handling the bat and didn’t feel right. One day, the pain was too intense, and she let me know, so we had to make this decision for her health.

“It’s hard to see any player injured, knowing the work that they put in. There is a silver lining. She will get better and is surrounded by great people who will help her get through this.”

A UCL is a ligament on the inner side of the elbow that secures the joint. Tommy John Surgery is named after the former MLB pitcher who was the first to undergo the procedure and successfully return to pitching. The goal of the surgery is to stabilize the elbow, reduce or eliminate pain and restore stability and range of motion, according to the Johns Hopkins Medicine website at

As part of the rehabilitation protocol, patients regain their normal range of motion in two to three months. A throwing athlete can expect to throw competitively again between six and nine months following the surgery.