Joe Carista, a junior right wing on the Whitman-Hanson High School hockey team, who narrowly escaped death after his throat was slashed by an opponent’s skate, was recovering Monday at a hospital near Boston.
Carista was in stable condition. On Saturday, 155 stitches were required to close an 18-inch wound in his throat.
“If (the skate) had come any closer to his jugular, we would have lost him,” said coach Bob Corliss. “I could see the inside of his whole throat.”
Carista fell to the ice when he went to check a Dennis-Yarmouth player early in their game. While he was down, an opposing player inadvertently skated over Carista’s throat.
He got up and skated over to the coach.
“I grabbed him by the shoulders and put him between my knees and said, `Don’t take your eyes off my eyes,”’ the coach said.
“He asked me, `Am I going to die coach? Tell me
how bad it is?’ I downplayed it and told him I’d had worse cuts before,” Corliss said.
Two aides put gauze pads on Carista’s throat before the ambulance got the teen to the hospital. He underwent 58 minutes of surgery.
Carista asked Corliss not to accompany him to the hospital but stay to coach the team, which won.