Lauren Hill dies after fighting brain tumor to play college basketball

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Lauren Hill drew national attention in November when she played in a Division III game despite her illness. (Getty)
Lauren Hill drew national attention in November when she played in a Division III game despite her illness. (Getty Images)

Lauren Hill, who became an inspiration playing college basketball while battling an inoperable brain tumor, died Friday morning, the co-founder of her nonprofit foundation told The Associated Press.

Hill was diagnosed with the tumor as a high school senior in 2013 but nonetheless enrolled at Mount St. Joseph, a Division III school in Cincinnati where state intended to play basketball.

The NCAA allowed the school to move up its opening game by two weeks so Hill could play. Her health was deteriorating at the time. She scored just 17 seconds into the game.

“It’s a dream come true,” Hill said that night. “To play on a college court, to put my foot down on the floor and hear the roar of the crowd — I just love it so much. I love basketball.”

Hill, 19, played in four games. Meanwhile, she helped start a nonprofit foundation that has raised more than $1.5 million for cancer research.

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