Former Maine collegiate athlete diagnosed with coronavirus in medically-induced coma

LEWISTON, Maine (WHDH) — A former star athlete at Bates College in Maine is now fighting for his life after testing positive for the coronavirus.

Jack Allard, 25, was in great health before contracting the virus that left him in a medically-induced coma.

His former Bates College lacrosse coach, Peter Lasagna, says he hopes Allard’s story can help change the narrative around young people and COVID-19.

“A part of why the family was motivated to move this from a very private thing to a very public thing is that that there are a lot of people out there that think that young, incredibly healthy, former college All-Americans are not the people that need to be worried,” he said.

Lasagna continued that Allard has a battle ahead of him.

“He is one of the most tenacious people I’ve ever been around in my entire life,” he said. “If he ever needed every cell of that tenacity, it’s right now.”

At Bates, Allard was dedicated to building a special team and left a lasting impression.

“In the language we all use about the greatest athletes that we’ve been around, do they make the people around them better?” Lasagna. “And he did, not simply by what he did every day at practice, but the way he went about his work.”

Jason Fein, director of athletics for the college, released a statement that read, “The Bates community is all grappling with the distressing news about Jack Allard, Class of 2016. A standout student-athlete at Bates, Jack played lacrosse for four years with the Bobcats with exceptional fire, drive, and loyalty to his team. Those qualities propelled him to become the first two-time All-American in team history. I know that every Bobcat is pulling for Jack to make a full recovery and sending our thoughts of comfort and strength to the Allard family.”

Allard’s family has fought through delays to get him access to an experimental drug that he will now be treated with at the UPenn Medical Center.

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