"I can't breathe" I don't know what's wrong," said Blue Ponies senior guard Marca Herron.
"She wanted to be available but her body wasn't having much of that," said Blue Ponies head coach Dustin Kraske.
That was the scary reality Havre's Marca Herron faced toward the end of her junior season. The Blue Ponies knew they were about to be challenged in Butte at the Class A State Tournament, but no one on the team had any idea what one of their own was up against.
Marca played sparingly at state as she watched her team make a run to the semifinals before losing to eventual state champ Columbia Falls. On the ride back to the hi-line, she knew she needed help.
"It was the most pain I had ever been in in my entire life," she said.
So Marca went to the emergency room. After some tests, the doctors made a discovery.
"I was diagnosed with antiphospholipid syndrome which is an auto immune disease that thickens your blood," Marca said.
Blood clots developed in both her lungs throughout the season.
"It affected my play a lot. I didn't have as much enthusiasm, I was tired, I couldn't breathe," she said of her condition.
To combat that Marca went on blood thinners. It was a decision that kept her from playing tennis in the spring and out of school for a month, but after recovering, the move enabled her to still be on the hardwood.
"Now that I'm back at it, and having the best year I can, it feels really great," she said.
And with their starting point guard back on the floor, Havre is having one of its best years.
"I think she's one of many pieces who if she's playing well at a high level we'll be alright," Kraske said.