High school football player dies after collision in game

Thursday October 2nd, 2014

A Long Island, New York, high school football player died after colliding with another player on the field during a game on Wednesday, according to the New York Times

Tom Cutinella, a 16-year-old on the varsity team at Shoreham-Wading River High School, died soon after being taken to the hospital, according to police. 

School superintendent Steven Cohen said Cutinella stood up after the collision before collapsing, and called it a "freak accident." He said Cutinella had played football since ninth grade and also played lacrosse. 

“Our school community is truly devastated by this awful news and we extend our deepest condolences to Tom’s family and friends during this difficult time,” Cohen said in a statement

Cohen said that the school's athletic director will lead an investigation into what happened during the game, including looking at the helmets used by players and the coordination of emergency responders.

According to the Times, Cutinella is the third high school football player to die in less than a week.

17-year-old Demario Harris of Alabama collapsed after making a tackle and was pronounced dead last Friday, reportedly because of a ruptured brain aneurysm. Isaiah Langston of North Carolina collapsed during warm-ups before a game last week and died a few days later.

In early September, a 16-year-old from Staten Island, New York, died after he collapsed during practice on a humid day, and in August, a 16-year-old in the Pittsburgh area died after he collapsed following drills on the field

- Molly Geary

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