CORVALLIS, Ore. — Former Malone standout Chai Baker remained hospitalized Thursday in an Oregon hospital after collapsing during a practice session with the Oregon State University men’s basketball team on Tuesday.
According to a story in the Jackson County Floridan, Baker, who is a freshman on the Oregon State team, collapsed during a team practice.
Various other media reports said that Baker lost consciousness for two to three minutes before being revived with a defibrillator and was transported to Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center in Corvallis.
Baker led Malone to the 2014 boys basketball state 1A championship.
After being under heavy sedation Tuesday and Wednesday, the Floridan said that Baker was taken off sedatives Thursday and had a ventilator removed, enabling him to sit up and speak for the first time since being hospitalized.
Doctors have speculated that Baker will make a complete recovery and resume his college basketball career, although cardiologists have scheduled further tests to determine whether or not Baker has a recurring condition.
Thus far, doctors have said that Baker’s collapse was not caused by a blood clot, arterial blockage or any known heart condition, the Floridan reported. The prevailing theory is that dehydration caused an electrolyte imbalance leading to arrhythmia.
Baker’s aunt works at Oregon State as an academic counselor and first contacted Baker’s family in Florida. His mother, Niki Keys-Baker, flew to Corvallis on Wednesday to be with her son, the Floridan reported.
Baker, a 6-foot-3, 175-pound guard, had a standout career at Malone and was a member of the East team in the annual Halifax All-Star Classic high school basketball showcase played in April at Gulf Coast State College.
His brother, Ty, is a member of the men’s basketball team at Chipola College.
Baker improving after hospitalization
The News Herald
CORVALLIS, Ore. — Malone native and incoming Oregon State freshman Chai Baker appears to be improving after collapsing and losing consciousness at a Tuesday morning practice.
Baker, a 6-foot-3 guard who led Malone to a Class 1A state championship last year, will remain at Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center in Corvallis for the next few days. Through a press release, Oregon State said Baker is able to feed himself and is breathing without the assistance of a ventilator. Doctors were hopeful he could be released from the intensive care unit as early as Friday, but that update was unavailable before press time.
According to The Oregonian, Baker was participating in a preseason workout with teammates Tuesday morning in the Beavers’ practice facility when he collapsed shortly before 11 a.m. An assistant coach called 911 while Baker received assistance. Paramedics arrived at 11:07 a.m. to rush Baker to the hospital.
Reports said Baker was unconscious for two or three minutes before he was revived with the use of a defibrillator.
After visiting Baker in his hospital room Thursday night, Beavers coach Wayne Tinkle tweeted: “Got a smile a mile wide when we walked into his room tonight, but the ‘I love you coach’ brought me to my knees!”
Oregon State spokesman Steve Clark added: “Everyone is extraordinarily pleased with how well he’s doing. It’s a remarkable turn of events considering what might have happened otherwise.”
Clark also noted that Baker recently has been cleared medically to play basketball after undergoing university-mandated heart screenings, including an echocardiogram test.