There was a frightening situation on Thursday night when Wofford took on Tennessee Tech. During the third quarter, linebacker Michael Roach collapsed on the sideline and immediately was surrounding by the medical staff.
There was cause for concern when Roach was stripped to his bare chest and had his heart pumped.
Roach was then transported from the field to Cookeville Regional Medical Center where he remained overnight for observation. The good news is that Roach, who at one point briefly stopped breathing, was conscious and alert.
“It was a very difficult situation tonight,” Wofford coach Mike Ayers said in a statement.
“We are lucky to have a great medical staff that took care of the situation immediately. When you have something happen in a game like that it is a shock. I love every one of these kids and I am thankful everything will be alright. I thought Tennessee Tech did a class thing coming together with our team. It was a tough, hard fought game and they have some players. I am proud of the way that our defense responded and proud of our offense taking care of the ball. We had a great camp and had our guys ready for the game.”
Roach, a junior linebacker from Kenosha, Wis., was down on the ground and emergency responders, Wofford doctors and athletic training staff first, were frantically working on him. They cut off his jersey and stripped him bare from the waist up. They pumped his chest.
It was so quiet that everyone could hear the EMS workers yell, “Clear!” before using a defibrillator, the paddles that restart the heart with electric current.
“He stopped breathing for a little bit,” said Dr. Stephen Kana, team orthopedist. “But we got him back. Fortunately, everybody did what they were supposed to do. …It was a scary deal.”
Following the game, which Wofford won, Roach took to social media to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers, while promising that he will “be back soon.”
We would like to wish Roach a full and speedy recovery.
Photo Credit: Michael Detwiler, Twitter