On December 22, Westfield (Mass.) High star Joe Mead was watching feet away from a loose ball scuffle between one of his teammates and the big man for Commerce (Mass.) High, center Sharvin Sands, during Westfield's 66-58 victory. As the two players on the floor began to shove and others rushed toward the scuffle, Mead ran in to defend his teammate.
Moments later he tottered away holding the side of his mouth, facing an unknown but lengthy layoff with a broken jaw, the victim of a violent sucker punch from Sands.