Perry Hall, MD - Before lacrosse sticks moved down the field at Perry Hall High School Friday night, a red out happened. Red shirts were worn by players with the words “Bre Strong.”
The varsity team named a new captain. She's a freshman and only 14 years old, but Breanna Sudano is showing the whole school how to be a team player.
Her story began in late September after Breanna just scored the winning goal in Catonsville for JV field hockey.
"I remember a little bit of the game and then I don't remember anything else," Sudano said.
Her family, mom, dad and older sister, were on the field when she collapsed. “We initially thought that she was maybe dehydrated, and then we realized after a few seconds when she wasn't getting up," said Rebecca Sudano, Breanna’s mother.
"I remember her falling, collapsing, and then I remember us making the decision that we need to perform CPR," said Chastin Faith, who was a varsity coach when Sudano collapsed.
Faith and four others took turns with chest compressions and deep breaths before the paramedics arrived. Her family, mom, dad, and older sister Samantha, were on the field.
"Just witnessing them performing CPR was traumatizing," said Rebecca Sudano.
Breanna went through surgery at the University of Maryland Children's Heart Program, where it was determined she was born with a condition that stopped the blood flow to an artery.
"As she exercised it caused an obstruction of the coronary artery and it caused her to collapse," said Dr. Peter Gaskin, Sudano’s cardiologist.
An athlete from the age of three, doctors never picked up on the heart defect. They wouldn't until she nearly died.
"Unfortunately, sometimes there's nothing that you can do, and Breanna was very, very lucky," said Dr. Gaskin.
Her luck started with the five people who jumped in to perform CPR. Breanna is a team manager, simply because she didn't want to sit out the rest of the year.
"I think it's great knowing that I'm making stuff aware to other parents because I know it was tough for my parents to experience and I would never want another family to go through that again," said Sudano.
The money from Friday night's game and the t-shirt sales will go to the American Heart Association. Breanna hopes her good health continues so she can start playing again in the fall.
Breanna’s entire family is now CPR certified. Bre's doctor says she wouldn't be alive if those five people didn't rush to her aide.
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