Competitive Drive: A letter from Bill Snyder inspires K-State soccer player during her darkest times

Competitive Drive

MANHATTAN, Kan. (KSNW) – Imagine hearing at just 14 years old that your athletic career could be over.

That was the words Maguire Sullivan heard back in 2014 after finding out she had a heart condition.

“I didn’t really know what was wrong, but I played a bunch of sports and during basketball games and track meets I started to pass out randomly,” said Sullivan.

She would ultimately be diagnosed with Supraventricular Tachycardia, also known as SVT.

“My heart just beat arrhythmically quite often when I did excessive exercise,” said Sullivan.

It would lead to a trip to Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City.

“That doctor told me that I could get this surgery where they froze a pathway in my heart to hopefully fix the problem,” said Sullivan.

She would have the surgery and during her recovery received some words of inspiration.

“I just got a letter one day in my mailbox,” said Sullivan.

With a handwritten note on it from legendary Kansas State head football coach Bill Snyder.

“It just told me to stay strong and keep fighting and it was cool, just really cool and inspiring at the time,” said Sullivan. “I think it was super uplifting because I felt pretty bleak after the doctors told me you can’t play again and here is this college football coach telling me good job, keep fighting, so I think it gave me hope.”

Sullivan says he hasn’t had any issues since her surgery.

She would carve out quite the soccer career at Bishop Carroll, where she would notch a career-high seven goals and an assist in 2018. She would also be named to the 5A All-State First Team and All-league First Team that year as well.

That afforded her the chance to play at the next level at K-State, for the school she grew up rooting for and for the place that gave her a little bit of hope when she needed it the most.

“I feel like everything kind of came full circle,” said Sullivan.

Sullivan just wrapped up her junior season, where she appeared in six games, registering 99 minutes for a Wildcats team that finished 3-6.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Download the KSN News App and stay up-to-date wherever you are. You can even watch KSN News live for free!
Click here to get the app
Get it in the App store
Get it in the Google Play store

KSN Storm Track 3 Weather

Trending Stories