During the middle of the 2019 Islanders tennis season, head coach Steve Moore noticed something unusual. His senior captain, Carlos Pedrosa, was not himself. Sluggish, fatigued, Pedrosa felt out of it.
“I told the trainers and I told my coach that I don’t feel good and we should probably go to the doctor,” Pedrosa said.
His trip to the doctors office revealed everything. His blood sugar was alarmingly high. Pedrosa was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.
“Everybody’s heart sunk,” Moore said.
Pedrosa’s senior season was put in doubt.
However, news came along that with the right precision and regiment, Pedrosa would be able to play again; but it would take the perfect amount of discipline. Pedrosa, being a mechanical engineering student with a 3.8 GPA, knew all about discipline.
“If anyone has the discipline and drive and grit and heart to manage it, it’s Carlos.”
Under the watchful eye of his coaches and trainers, Pedrosa began to play again and play at a high level.
As the season flew by, the Islanders found themselves in the Southland Conference championship match against Abilene Christian.
With their backs against the wall, the final match would decide the champion. Carlos Pedrosa just so happened to be on that final court, trailing two sets to none.
An opportunity that had slipped through his fingers sat in front of him; a chance to play in the NCAA tournament.
“I had lost in the final the last three years.”
With the team and about 300 fans surrounding the court, Pedrosa slowly made his comeback. Like the way he treats his school work and his diabetes care, he worked with precision placing shot after shot in the perfect location.
Finally, after a long rally, Pedrosa had done it. He had come all the way back to win the match and win his team the conference tournament.
“It was the best feeling ever.”
Pedrosa hopes that his story serves as inspiration for those with diabetes. His most important piece of advice: don’t ever give up.