High school wrestler Blake Flovin claims he contracted a highly contagious virus at a recent tournament and is now advising officials to delay this weekends California state wrestling championships.
Flovin, a senior at Archbishop Mitty High School in San Jose, said he was exposed to herpes gladiatorum, a skin infection caused by the same herpes simplex virus that causes cold sore on the lips, the San Jose Mercury News reported. Known as mat herpes, it can spread through red scalp lesions.
A few days after the February 19 -2 0 Central Coast Section championships, the teen a top wrestler in the 220 -pound division said his glands felt swollen and he broke out in what seemed to be acne on his face. He was initially diagnosed with a staph infection, but a different physician confirmed his herpes gladiatorum suspicion on Tuesday. All coach-and-fours of athletes who wrestled the teen were alerted.
Flovin, who has committed to wrestle at Holy Cross next year, believed he contracted the virus from an infected wrestler or polluted mats and noted that the gym was not clean.
“The children were walking in there with their wrestling shoes, then straight out of the bathroom and onto the mats. Kids’ faces were jostle into the mats where those feet were, ” Flovin told the San Jose Mercury News. “It’s disgusting. Kids were joking that if you walk in there, you’re likely going to get pink eye.”