A Comeback Story: Tim Holler


Alfred State College Baseball star is back after major health challenge

The story of Alfred State senior outfielder Tim Holler is one of a true comeback. Throughout his life, Tim has had adversity come his way, and without fail he has overcome every hurdle in his path.

In 2019, Tim began his first-year spring. He did not start the season as a perennial bat in the lineup, but by the end of the year he was a lock in the middle of the order. He batted .326 with 14 RBI’s in 30 games played. All while battling a disease he didn’t know he had. Midway through his spring, he realized something was wrong as the symptoms began to show themselves in more obvious ways. After the season, Tim was diagnosed with a severe case of ulcerative colitis.

Fast forward two years, to the summer of 2021. Tim was playing the best baseball of his career. His junior season for Alfred State he batted .323 with an OPS of .984 and 17 RBI’s. He was also an everyday starter for the Hornell Dodgers of the NYCBL before his ulcerative colitis got worse midway through his summer season, so bad that he ended up at a hospital in Brewster, NY.

He was hospitalized for 8 days and realized that his baseball playing career might be over. Tim was in and out of doctor’s offices and his symptoms were enough to keep him out of school in the 2021-22 year. That season, he had to watch the team from his couch, not able to help them through the spring season, which he so badly wanted to do. While being home, Tim put his effort into his family, his faith and hoping that he would return to health. In his time where he wasn’t feeling ill, he would go fishing and watch all the Alfred State athletic events and Major League Baseball.

Tim credits his ability to overcome this obstacle to his family, girlfriend, and faith. They helped him accept his health condition and find ways to cope with it. Holler explained what he meant by that in a very simple sentence. “I learned to accept help and support from people who wanted to give it to me.”

Athletics teaches you teamwork, but sometimes, especially in baseball, you are always competing with someone else. Whether it is for more at-bats, more playing time, or just trying to beat the other team, sometimes it supports a one-man show type of mentality. Tim learned that in life, a good support system is more valuable if you allow them to help.

Through the help of the right doctor, his family, girlfriend and faith, Tim was able to suppress his symptoms enough to return to Alfred State this spring. Even after a year away from school and baseball, Holler is in the middle of his best season yet. In nine games played, Tim is hitting .378 with 11 RBI’s , 4 home runs and an OPS of 1.108. He will look to continue his productive season in what is the Pioneers best start to the year in program history.

Each month NADIIIAA showcases stories from the community about a different theme. March’s is Human Interest Stories. This is a great opportunity for members to showcase the great things that they are doing in and around campuses.

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