It has undeniably been a strange 24 hours for Pierria Henry.
On Thursday, he was the 49ers’ hero, shooting 11 free throws with only a few seconds remaining on the clock to stun Richmond and help his Charlotte team advance to play the No. 1 seed in the Atlantic 10 Tournament, the St. Louis Billikens.
Once again, Henry finds himself at the center of attention, but for a far more scary and dangerous reason. After taking a shot to the chest from the Billikins’ Jordair Jett, Henry went down, and stayed down. The game was stopped dead in its tracks late in the second half and, for the next three minutes, trainers attended to him on the floor.
From there, he was moved to the bench, where he spent another few minutes under the watchful eyes of the team’s training staff before leaving the floor altogether.
He now finds himself in the hospital, pending further testing.
“I haven’t learned anything yet,” Charlotte coach Alan Major said shortly after the game, via CBS Sports. “They’re very concerned, to be quite honest with you. When a guy has a tough time breathing, I’m not quite sure what that means. So we’re trying to organize the guys, the whole team is going to go to the hospital where he’s at, as a team. They said in the locker room they want to be with him. So hopefully he’s OK. But once this wraps up, we’ll go find out. They just — when they went to the monitor, they said it wasn’t anything flagrant. It was almost like an incidental thing. So hopefully it will be fine. I guess I’m a little bit more pleased that you have the type of team that wants to go be with a teammate together.”
Charlotte was beaten badly by St. Louis, 72-55. The A-10 is not the type of league that sends half a dozen or more teams to the NCAA Tournament, so the 49ers’ will not be dancing. However, with a record of 21-11 overall and 8-8 in the conference, their season is not done. In all likelihood, the team will be receiving an invite to the NIT.
No matter what happens with the rest of this season, coach Major put it perfectly. The guys want to go visit Henry together.
Because situations like these are far bigger than the game.
We will keep you updated as the situation progresses.
h/t CBS Sports