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December 2, 2020

North Rowan basketball player recovering after collapsing on the court


Henderson Lentz

Henderson Lentz

A North Rowan High School basketball player who collapsed Tuesday at a team camp in Catawba College’s Goodman Gym is in stable condition

Henderson Lentz, a rising junior at North Rowan, was walking to the bench after playing a scrimmage game when he collapsed.

“He had just been in a play on the court and had been fouled,” said his mother, Jill Lentz.

When he started walking toward the foul line, he became lightheaded and dizzy, and his vision started to blur.

Henderson began walking toward the bench and collapsed.

“He was laying there black and blue with no oxygen,” his mother said.

Catawba College athletic trainer Brenda Paider and several others jumped into action.

Paider had an Automated External Defibrillator, or AED, in her athletic training pack and used it, along with CPR, to revive Henderson.

According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, AEDs are used on patients who go into sudden cardiac arrest. The device shocks the heart in hope of restoring a regular heart rhythm.

“When I walked into the gym, at least three of them were working,” said Catawba College Athletic Director Larry Leckonby. “Time kind of stopped.”

“I was in shock,” said Catawba assistant basketball coach Brian Graves, who was refereeing a game in the gym when the incident occurred.

It took eight to nine minutes to revive Henderson, Graves said.

Leckonby said the student’s mother and three grandparents were watching the game and were there when the incident occurred.

“When he opened his eyes, his mother was there,” he said.

Leckonby added that medical personnel are hired to work every camp on campus.

“Having a certified athletic trainer at practices, games and camps is outstanding,” he said.

Henderson is in stable condition in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center in Charlotte.

“He’s doing well,” his mother said. “He’s able to eat food now.”

“The doctors are still trying to put two and two together,” she said, adding that they’ve done multiple tests to try to diagnose the problem.

Today, Jill said, doctors plan to insert an internal defibrillator under Henderson’s left arm.

“It’s not going to be a recovery, it’s going to be learning to maintain,” she said. “He has his own AED.”

Doctors say they believe Henderson will be able to play basketball again.

Henderson was “totally healthy,” Jill said, adding that the family has been “shocked and overwhelmed.”

Doctors keep telling Henderson that he’s lucky, she said.

“We believe in the power of prayer and that whole gymnasium turned into a prayer chapel when Henderson was on the floor,” she said.



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