High School Basketball

Lafayette player cleared to play

Lafayette senior Deron Linton, who sat out the entire regular season because of a heart condition diagnosed in September, has been cleared by doctors to play against Lexington Christian Academy in the 43rd District basketball tournament on Tuesday.

The 6-foot-4 Linton was expected to be one of the top players in the 11th Region this season after averaging 15 points and nine rebounds as a junior.

But during pre-season conditioning, he was diagnosed with Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM), a genetic heart condition that can cause sudden death of an individual with no warning. Linton and his family decided he would not risk playing his senior year.

But genetic testing and cardiac MRI results returned last week were not consistent with HCM, and Linton was cleared to play in the district.

Linton practiced Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

"We're excited Deron's gotten this news, just for the peace of mind for him and his family that for the rest of his life he doesn't have to worry about having HCM," Lafayette Coach Damon Kelley said.

"From a basketball standpoint, we're excited to have him back on the court. We don't know what to expect of him because he's had six months of inactivity."

On Lafayette's senior night against Henry Clay last week, Linton was in the starting lineup but only for ceremonial purposes. He was allowed by Henry Clay to score the first basket of the game — a dunk — but went to the bench immediately after that.