Loyola senior Ally Peters is expected to miss the remaining contests in the Flyers’ LHSAA Division III state title run after being diagnosed with a rare disease earlier this week. She won’t be playing Friday for the Flyers, or for the West team in next week’s Louisiana High School Soccer Coaches Association All-Star game, but she will be watching and evaluating.
The speedy midfielder was on the way to her team’s playoff game Monday when her mother received a call from Dr. Eddie Anglin telling her to come to the hospital immediately.
“We had just passed Savoie’s, so I pulled over and started asking questions,” Jennifer Peters said. “We took her in and they admitted her. We didn’t make the game.”
Ally had been having pains in her back and hip for over a month, but had brushed off the pain as teenagers often do, attributing it to soccer. She has played soccer virtually her entire life and had been injured a number of times, according to her mom. But she was in religion class at Loyola on Monday, when senior religion teacher Michelle Brown noticed abnormal swelling and discoloration in her left leg . Brown sent Peters to the office, which eventually got her to the hospital, which may well have saved her life.
“Ally had a CT scan run and they found multiple old blood clots in her pelvis and one had blocked the vein completely,” Jennifer said. “She was diagnosed with May-Thurner Syndrome, a rare vein disorder. Dr. Anglin said he had never seen a case in 35 years.”
May-Thurner causes pain, swelling and the always dangerous blood clots. It’s three times more common in women than in men. Peters had a stent put in to help alleviate the problem.
Peters said the outpouring of support from the students, faculty and families at Loyola has been tremendous. Also, members of the Byrd soccer team, including Cat Humphrey, Taylor Arnold and Sarah Tamplin, have been by to offer support.
Active in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Ally was upset earlier this week that she missed an FCA meeting for just the second time in four years at Loyola. She also plays tennis for the Flyers and hopes to be back on the court this spring.
“We’ll have to see,” Jennifer Peters said.
Meanwhile, Ally is expecting to be cheering on the sidelines when the No. 2 Flyers host No. 6 Teurlings Catholic at 7 p.m. Friday in the semifinals of the D-III playoffs. A win would send the Flyers and Peters to New Orleans next week for the state championship game. Jennifer Peters is excited about that possibility, but even more elated to have her daughter still with her.
“We were so frightened when we saw how many clots she had,” Jennifer said. “But everything works out for the good. Ally was telling the nurses ‘PTL – Praise The Lord.’ Just the fact that Loyola’s religion teacher noticed this tells you that the Lord had his hand in it.”