A girls basketball star in Massachusetts has sparked a new level of debate in concussions when she and her coach claimed that she was accused of suffering from a concussion by an opponent’s trainer while she was actually fine, costing her team a shot at a deep run in the state tournament.
As first reported by the Boston Herald, Boston (Ma.) New Mission High girls basketball star DeAndra Humphries was poked in the face by a player from Shawsheen (Ma.) Regional High during New Mission’s surprise 57-55 loss in an early round Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association tournament game. While Humphries had to go to the bench early in the fourth quarter to deal with the minor injury that resulted from receiving a stern finger in the face, she insists that she was always fully conscious and aware of what was going on around her.
That was contrary to the opinion of the Shawsheen athletic trainer, who was serving as the trainer for the game and determined that Humphries had a concussion and was unsafe to continue in the game.
“I started crying when they told me I had a concussion because I knew I didn’t have one,” Humphries told the Herald. “They asked me if I was all right and I said yes. They asked me if I knew where I was and I told them. They had me stick out my tongue and move my eyeballs around and did that. They then asked if the light was hurting me and I told them no.
“I just couldn’t believe they wouldn’t let me back in the game.”
At the time, New Mission held an eight-point advantage. With Humphries relegated to the bench, Shawsheen marched all the way back to escape with a two-point victory.
New Mission athletic director Cory McCarthy was quick to challenge the final result, arguing that his team was actively swindled out of a likely victory by the elimination of its star play via the most duplicitous means possible. Humphries had already scored 11 points at the time of her alleged non-concussion, and was exerting a significant influence on the game.
Yet the MIAA gave short shrift to New Mission’s complaint, instead siding with Shawsheen and its trainer with a rather curt statement.
“We’re not about to question the judgment of a qualified trainer on the scene at the time,” MIAA spokesman Paul Wetzel told the Herald. “As far as we are concerned, the game is over.”
So is New Mission’s season, even if it shouldn’t be, and that isn’t fair to Humphries or any of her teammates, coaches or fans.