Lipscomb track and field standout Matt Deery died in an automobile accident on Wednesday afternoon when he crashed into a truck in Upper Nazareth Township, Pa.
Deery, who was from nearby Phillipsburg, N.J., was only 19 and entering his sophomore year at Lipscomb.
“We are obviously heartbroken for Matt's family and friends and I ask that you please be in prayer for comfort and peace all of those who will be grieving over his loss,” Lipscomb athletics director Philip Hutcheson said in a release on Thursday. “Matt was a very special student-athlete and words are inadequate to describe how difficult this is for the Lipscomb family.”
According to The Express-Times in Pennsylvania, Deery swerved his Jeep into oncoming traffic as he tried to avoid hitting a Nissan Altima, which was turning onto an adjacent road. Deery then struck a truck cab head on and was pronounced dead at the scene.
In just one season with the Bisons, he broke school records in the indoor and outdoor pole vault, the 60-meter hurdles, the 110-meter hurdles and the heptathlon. He also became the first Lipscomb field athlete to earn second-team All-Atlantic Sun Conference honors after he placed second in the pole vault. He was also named to the league’s all-academic team.
“Matt was an incredible athlete and an even more incredible person,” Lipscomb coach Bill Taylor. “Everyone loved him. He was a smart, caring, likable guy. He was a gifted athlete, yet he was so humble. It's really hard to comprehend this right now. Matt was a wonderful person with a gigantic future. He is going to be greatly missed by everyone who knew him. I know our entire team is praying for his family, his friends and each other.”