LAKEVIEW, MICH. - It was military appreciation night at Kent City High school on Friday, which turned out to be a blessing in disguise for Lakeview High School.
"There were so many amazing vets that were there that had medical experience that were prepared," Lakeview High School football coach Sean Rinehart said.
They were prepared for an injury on the field.
"It was 28-14, and then Mason went down and it kind of changed the tone of the game," Rinehart said.
Active duty military told us the lineman had a chest injury and was overheated.
"I ran onto the field and so did my defensive coordinator, and then we saw him fall to the ground," Rinehart said. "He took a hit to the chest which caused a bruised sternum which affected his heart and that's what caused his shortness of breath and I'm sure the dehydration and the heat, I'm sure that played a role as well."
The 90 degree temperature isn't something these kids are used to when playing under the Friday night lights.
"When you battle heat like that and you're not used to it, when you're not used to that and you're playing offense, defense, some of those kids played all three. I think that's one of those experiences that you don't get because you don't see that heat all the time in Michigan," Rinehart said.
The referees were requiring mandatory water breaks during any change of possession that didn't hurt the momentum of the game.
"Even during time outs, they were being very nice as far as not giving you just thirty seconds, take a couple of minutes they were literally repeating to us, take all the time you need, take two to three minutes, get a drink," Rinehart said.
Fortunately, the Lakeview player was released from the hospital a few hours later, early Saturday morning. He is expected to be OK.
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