Photo courtesy of Nick Ieradi

Eddy Glazener’s Journey Back from a Torn Achilles

By Jerome Taylor | Jul 27, 2023

Eddy Glazener, the defensive linchpin of the Redwoods, was forced to grapple with a formidable challenge this year - the repercussions of a partial Achilles tear. This devastating injury which occurred during a matchup against the Waterdogs last August became the prologue for his story this season.

“I never really had an injury that took me out of more than one game. And for me to have an injury like that, which almost ended my career, it put me in a position to step back and re-evaluate my training more than anything,” Glazener said.

Less than a year after his injury, his route back to the pinnacle of the sport required a renewed focus once his recovery was complete.  He restructured his infamous 5 am workouts, with a new emphasis on mobility versus weightlifting, in an effort to keep his body's "vulnerable areas" healthier.

According to Redwoods head coach Nat St. Laurent, the results have been noticeable, and so has the change in Glazener’s style of play. 

“He’s elevated his game in how he's supporting. And then when he has to slide, he slides timely…he's getting the ball on the ground,” St. Laurent said. “This is coming off an Achilles injury, which is saying something about his commitment to the work that he put in this offseason.”

St. Laurent mentioned that quantifying Glazener's contributions can be challenging at times because so much of his impact on the field doesn’t end up on the stat sheet and comes from him being an effective communicator. But there are some numbers that tell his story this season.

Through five games, he’s up to six caused turnovers, four off from his career high, which Glazener attributes to taking more risks.

“I do think there have been moments this season where I may have put myself in the slide role when I may not have needed to be the slide man… in an effort to try to put the ball on the ground or get a stop,” Glazener explained.

Coupled with Glazener's increased aggression on the field, his known selflessness has also led to some tip-of-the-hat plays, like blocking shots against Chaos. 

These contributions have helped propel the Redwoods to a settled defensive efficiency of 23% (33 goals allowed in 144 settled offensive possessions), good for third in the league.

“Our culture and togetherness, particularly through difficult stretches of games, has been exemplary,” Glazener said. “As we get into the back half [of the season], and leading into the playoffs, we need to make sure that [our system] is fine-tuned and built to perfection.”

Glazener and the ‘Woods start their push into the playoffs against the Cannons on Saturday at 8:30 ET on ESPN+.