NCAA, Sports

Teammates of Michigan recruit who survived two plane crashes rush court after first basket in return

Austin Hatch has already gone through more pain and suffering than some people go through in a lifetime. The 19-year old Hatch – who committed to play basketball at Michigan back in 2011 – lost his mother, 11-year-old sister and 5-year-old brother in a plane crash back in 2003.

Then, shortly after committing to the Wolverines, Hatch lost his father and stepmother in another plane crash. Hatch’s father piloted both flights, and Austin survived both times.

Following the second crash, Austin was placed into a medically induced coma for almost two months. When he woke up, he made it his goal to continue his dream of playing basketball.

Three years later, the 6’6 forward finally returned to the basketball court to make his debut for Loyola High School in Los Angeles on Wednesday night. After entering the game in the fourth quarter, Hatch drilled a three-pointer in the corner – prompting his teammates and coach to go wild and storm the court in celebration.

Loyola received a technical foul as a result but their coach, Jamal Adams, told ESPN that it was “the best technical foul I’ve ever been a part of.”

Michigan still plans on honoring their scholarship offer to Austin, who signed a letter of intent with UM in November.