West football player recovering after collapse

Excessive heat prompts Lee’s Summit schools to move game times back one hour

dmcqueen@lsjournal.comAugust 21, 2014 

A Lee’s Summit West football player is expected to make a full recovery after collapsing during practice due to the heat on Aug. 19.

Jacob Williamson, a junior offensive lineman, collapsed after walking off the field toward the athletic trainers during the late afternoon practice. Richard Bechard, the athletic director for the Lee’s Summit R-7 School District, said Williamson walked normally until he got to the sideline, where he collapsed after telling the trainers that he wasn’t feeling well.

Williamson was unresponsive after he collapsed and taken to Children’s Mercy Hospital, where he was initially listed in serious condition. He was still hospitalized as of Friday afternoon, but his condition had been upgraded to good.

“They’re optimistic that he will make a full recovery and he indicated that he’d like to play in Friday night’s game,” Bechard said. “We’re excited about his prognosis but we were concerned right off the bat.”

Lee’s Summit West coach Royce Boehm said Aug. 20 that he couldn’t comment on the incident.

Bechard said he was satisfied that West’s coaches and trainers had handled the situation properly. He said the players were getting frequent water breaks and following other precations even though the district’s heat policy, which kicks in after the heat index reaches 95 degrees, wasn’t in effect. The Titans did move their practice to the evening the following day.

“I’m very confident he got extremly good care and everying was done the right way and in a timely way,” Bechard said.

With more hot weather forecast for tonight, all three Lee’s Summit schools have moved the starting time for their game times back an hour to 8 p.m. Lee’s Summit West is home against Liberty, Lee’s Summit North plays host to Park Hill South and Lee’s Summit takes on Truman at William Chrisman.

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