RONKONKOMA - An Islanders goal may have saved the life of a young hockey fan from Ronkonkoma.

Bradley Tierno and his family attended the Islanders’ win over the Flyers back on Nov. 24. Islanders star John Tavares dramatically scored a shootout winner, sending the fans home happy and Bradley running out of the building.

“My head started to hurt really bad,” says the boy.

Bradley darted into the aisle and nearly out of the building when his father Brian caught up to him. Brian Tierno says his son told him five words that he’ll never forget.

“He said ‘something in my head broke,’” says Brian Tierno.

The family went home after calming Bradley down. However, Bradley’s pain didn’t stop and the child could not sleep. His parents then rushed him to Stony Brook Children's Hospital after he started vomiting.

Bradley spent two days in pediatric nephrologist Dr. Katarina Supe-Markovina’s care.  The doctor discovered that Bradley had previously undiagnosed high blood pressure. The excitement of the game caused Bradley to have a hypertensive crisis. Since the blood pressure had not been diagnosed, it caused one of the ventricles in his heart to thicken – a potentially life-threatening situation. With medicine, Dr. Supe-Markovina says his prognosis is good.

The family says they owe a debt of gratitude to Tavares for that life-changing goal.

“I have to thank him for my child’s life,” says Brian Tierno.