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Penn State Brandywine Grad Discusses Viral Foul Ball Catch At Mets-Phillies Game

If you follow sports at all, you likely saw this sweet foul-ball snag in the seventh inning of the Phillies-Mets game Sunday night.

Pat Gallagher, a Delaware County native and 2020 Penn State Brandywine graduate, is the man behind the viral play. He sat down with Onward State this week to break down his spectacular snag.

Gallagher first noted that he and his girlfriend, Alli, went to Citizens Bank Park on a whim Sunday night.

“The game started at 7 p.m., and I actually had a friend put on their Instagram story, ‘Does anyone want tickets? Something came up,'” Gallagher said. “I saw that and messaged him like a minute later…I went to pick up my girlfriend, and we got down there at around 7:25 p.m. I think it was around the third inning.”

From there, it was an average experience for the pair as they enjoyed their seats on the left-field line. New York and Philadelphia took part in a back-and-forth battle on ESPN’s “Sunday Night Baseball,” and Gallagher and his girlfriend enjoyed the ball game.

“It’s funny. I was saying, ‘I’ve never come close to a foul ball and have never had one hit in my direction,'” Gallagher added.

They then planned to grab ice cream after the bottom of the sixth inning wrapped up. Gallagher had a bit of a brain fart, however, and they instead got up from their seats after the top half of the inning finished. They were settled into their seats with ice cream in hand just in time for the top of the seventh.

Gallagher remembers being upset after missing Didi Gregorious’s three-run dinger in the bottom of the sixth. He thought he had missed the moment of the game, but that was obviously still to come.

Just a few minutes later, Mets hitter Michael Conforto saw just two pitches before he ripped one foul down the left-field line. The ball was headed right for Gallagher and Alli, and the rest is history.

“Conforto is up. He’s a lefty, so obviously, if it’s a foul ball, it’s gonna come in our direction,” Gallagher said. “The last thing I remember before it was hit to us was eating ice cream in the one hand. The ball comes flying off the bat, and it comes off quicker than you imagine.”

“It’s like a flight or fight reaction,” he continued. “I just remember it was curving across my body, and I just stuck my arm out. My hand was in the right place, and the ball just drops in. Next thing you know, the place is going crazy.”

What a moment.

Mind you, that ball was coming off the bat at 97 miles per hour. Yikes. Gallagher said it really didn’t hurt at all after he made the play.

“That’s what everyone keeps asking me. It didn’t hurt at all,” Gallagher said. “I want to say it was my adrenaline, but it didn’t hurt the next day, and it didn’t hurt an hour after.”

Shortly after Gallagher made the catch, people everywhere took notice. It was even included as No. 9 on SportsCenter’s Top 10 Plays the next morning.

As Gallagher notes in the tweet, this is his second time he’s been featured on the famous SportsCenter segment. As a basketball player at Penn State Brandywine, Gallagher said he was dunked on when he was a freshman, which made the cut for Top 10 Plays.

The Delaware County native clearly got some redemption with this play, however. One fan quickly high-fived him after the catch and nearly knocked his ice cream out of his hand, while others were fist-bumping him and Alli for the rest of the night.

We’d tell you to bring your gloves next time you’re at a baseball game, but it seems as if Gallagher has figured out the new go-to method. Just grab some ice cream, stick your hand out, and hope for the best. You might just end up on SportsCenter.

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About the Author

Will Pegler

Will is a junior majoring in digital and print journalism and is an associate editor for Onward State. He is from Darien, Connecticut and is a lifelong Penn State football fan. He loves a good 80's comedy movie, Peaky Blinders, The Office, and the New York Yankees and Giants. You can catch some of his ridiculous sports takes on his Twitter @gritdude and yell at him on his email [email protected]

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