Referee Revived After Collapse at High School Basketball Game

Raymond, NH – January 24, 2010 – On Monday evening, the Raymond High School junior varsity girl’s basketball team hosted the team from Epping in what was a closely fought game throughout. With about three minutes left to go in the game, one of the referees on the court suddently collapsed. Mike Thompson, ATC, is a certified athletic trainer employed by Access Sports Medicine & Orthopaedics. Mike is contracted by Raymond High School to provide trainer coverage for home sporting events. When Mike saw the referee collapse, he immediately knew something was wrong.

“I saw him collapse and he was across the court from me. The next thing I knew I was kneeling next to him with all of my equipment, it’s funny, I don’t even remember running across the court to get to him,” said Thompson. It is clear that Thompson’s training and instincts kicked in and he calmly and professionally assessed the situation. He recalls, “I couldn’t find a pulse and he wasn’t breathing, he was having cardiac arrest. We started CPR.” Mike was joined on the court by two nurses, Cyndi Campbell and Jami Dion, and EMT Samantha Larrabee. The team administered CPR and after six rounds of compressions Thompson used the schools AED, or portable defibrillator to re-start the man’s heart. The group kept him stable until paramedics arrived and transported him to the hospital.

The quick actions and efforts by Thompson and the other medical professionals that were on hand at Monday’s game saved this man’s life. And kudos to Raymond High School and Athletic Director Davinney Brazeau for understanding the importance of having an AED at the school for these unexpected circumstances.

Access Sports Medicine & Orthopaedics has provided athletic trainer coverage for several Seacoast area schools for the past decade. Most high schools in the area do not have the resources to employ a full-time athletic trainer on their own. By employing the athletic trainers, Access Sports Medicine is able to offer contracted coverage to small schools like Raymond High School at a price that the athletic programs can afford. More and more schools are understanding the importance of having athletic trainers on hand, and handling situations like what happened at Raymond High School on Monday are a testament to that point.

Thompson concluded, “You can plan, train, and mentally prepare yourself for situations like this your whole life and wonder how you will react. I for one am very grateful that it turned out the way it did. The fact that the gentleman is recovering is in itself it’s own reward. I feel very humbled by the situation and I’m glad for what I have contributed to the profession of Athletic Training and Access Sports Medicine.”