CLAYTON — Hogan Teem was just doing what most high school baseball players do this time of year, jogging around the Clayton High School track during an organized off-season workout. But on Thursday afternoon, something went tragically wrong.
Teem, a senior, collapsed and later died at WakeMed in Raleigh, according to Clayton High School principal Clint Eaves.
Eaves said Comets head baseball coach Stacey Houser and assistant coach Kim Smith were with the players when Teem collapsed. Houser and Smith quickly summoned Clayton athletic trainer John Barnes and first responder Brian Roach.
“Between the work of Doc Barnes and Brian and the rescue squad, he was stable enough to transport,” Eaves said.
Members of the baseball team and Clayton High community were shaken by the tragedy. Many expressed their feelings in Facebook and Twitter posts for the apparently well-liked student-athlete. His mother, Allyson Teem, is a teacher at West Johnston High School.
Friday’s scheduled basketball games between Clayton and Garner have been postponed because of Teem’s death.
“The basketball coaches, especially (boys coach) Denny (Medlin) thought it was in the best interest of the kids to not play,” said Clayton athletic director Gary Fowler. “There were a lot of kids close to him. That just speaks to the way kids here felt about Hogan.”
Teem, according to a YouTube video, was also a member of the Yak Travel Baseball organization. He played third base and outfield, and pitched, according to the video.
“You talk to Coach Houser, and all you hear is how hard-working (Teem) always was, doing everything he could to overcome obstacles and give his best effort,” Eaves said.
Johnston County Schools Superintendent Dr. Ed Croom, who visited with the Teem family on Thursday night, said it was one of the saddest things he’s ever experienced.
“When kids perish in a wreck there’s some level of knowing what happened. With this, it’s just a complete shock,” Croom said.
Teem’s death continues a string of tragic deaths hitting the Clayton High athletic program. Since 2011, four former Clayton High athletes under the age of 24 – Adonis Banks, Christopher Pretty, Kyle Kozlowski and Kasie Moore – have perished in car accidents. Two other young adults who went to Clayton – 2009 graduate Devin Mosteller and 17-year-old Tania Ritacco – also died in car accidents.
Funeral arrangements have not been set. Grief counselors were expected to be on hand Friday at Clayton High School.