Teen Dies After Collapsing During High School Basketball Game

On January 31, tragedy struck when Cartier Woods, an 18-year-old Michigan native, collapsed during a high school basketball game at Northwestern High School in Detroit. Woods had told his coach, George Tyson, just before the incident that he did not feel well and needed to come out. 

Immediately after, he went into cardiac arrest, and Tyson commenced CPR until paramedics arrived. After using an automated external defibrillator and providing Woods with CPR for around 40-60 minutes, they rushed him to Henry Ford Hospital. 

Woods’ family and friends held a prayer vigil for him on Friday night. However, all their efforts were in vain, as he passed away on Monday night.

Woods had always been an athlete and had aspired to play college and even professional basketball one day. His aunt and legal guardian, Dwanda Woods told WXYZ “No one can stop him. He just loves playing football, basketball. That’s his number one goal of what he wanted to do his whole life,” Woods claimed he had no history of cardiac disease or other health problems. 

Melonie Woods, his “Sister/Cousin,” established a GoFundMe account to raise money for his medical expenses and has already gathered almost $7,000 of its $20,000 goal.

Melonie remembers her brother/cousin. She said, “Cartier was such a great kid; all he do was wanted to go to school, play sports, be with his family and friends.”

According to healthychildren.org, Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) is a dire medical emergency that occurs when there is an abrupt and unforeseen disruption of the heart’s functioning, resulting in the loss of consciousness and collapse. If not treated within a few minutes, it can be fatal.

It is believed to be a significant source of deaths in young athletes, but it can also impact those not engaged in organized sports. It can come on unexpectedly during physical activity or even at rest, including when asleep.

Although it happens, it is considered rare among the young. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that each year, around 2,000 young adults aged 25 and below in the US unexpectedly pass away due to sudden cardiac arrest.

Cardiac arrest is believed to be a major factor in the mortality rate of young athletes, yet it can also strike those not engaged in competitive sports. It can occur when exercising, when still, and even while sleeping.