UCLA Softball Star Stevie Wisz Postponed Open Heart Surgery to Finish Senior Season

Stevie Wisz, a star of the UCLA basketball program, wears a pacemaker. However, that hasn’t stopped the 22-year-old senior from finishing her final season with the Bruins. In fact, she has gone so far as to postpone open heart surgery to help UCLA to the Women’s College World Series.
“I give so much of my life to that team and they give so much to me, I didn’t want to miss out,” Wisz said in a feature with ESPN.com. “Not just the game, but the memories.”
Wisz initially joined UCLA as a practice player following a tryout in her freshman year. She then was promoted to the active roster and has played as a defensive standout including in the 2018 Women’s College World Series.
Following the conclusion of the season, Wisz will then walk in graduation to receive her bachelor’s degree in biology before undergoing the knife on June 21.
“We told her we would support her with whatever she wanted to do, but it was her decision,” her father, Steve, added in the ESPN article. “She was emphatic. ‘I’m not missing school. And I’m not missing softball.’”
Wisz has suffered from heart issues throughout her life, undergoing her first heart surgery at the age of 9. She was diagnosed with aortic stenosis, which narrows the aorta.
From the report:

In San Luis Obispo, doctors diagnosed Stevie with aortic stenosis, the severe narrowing of the aorta as it branches out from the heart. Stevie’s aortic valve was one-sixteenth the size it should have been. With such a narrow passageway, much of the blood her heart was pumping was leaking back into the heart chamber, meaning her heart had to work that much harder to pump blood throughout her body.

UCLA opens its Super Regional matchup against James Madison on Friday, May 24 in Los Angeles. Game 1 will begin at 9:00 p.m. ET on ESPNU.

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