When High School Football is Bigger Than High School Football

Attributions: 
By Jen Riess on KSL.com

Original story found here.

"Friday night lights is a memorable time for high schoolers, especially seniors who play football," said Alan with Maple Mountain High School. "On one of these nights a few weeks ago Payson High School was playing Maple Mountain High School. As if just the game was not big enough, this was Payson homecoming game. Sometime during the game, a young man on Payson was injured. After taking a minute he felt like he could continue to play, not knowing the extent of the injury in his body.

"The next day this young man from Payson went on his homecoming day activity, still sore from the night before. But as the day went on the pain got worse. It was then he and his friends realized something was truly wrong. Parents were called and he was rushed to the hospital. He had sustained an injury that caused severe internal bleeding. The x-ray showed the blood in his abdomen. With an 80% chance of needing surgery this young man laid on the bed not knowing what tomorrow would bring.

"Through the grapevine, Maple Mountains coach and a few players heard about this young man's situations. In a meeting with team captains and a few other seniors, they decided to go visit this young man in the hospital. Maple Mountain's head coach scheduled a time for his players to meet this man from Payson, who just a few nights ago was the foe. As the Maple Mountain players on their own accord visited this young man with their coach, lines of rivalry schools were shattered. Friendship, respect, and concern for another competitor was bigger than high school football.

"In moments like this we all can follow the example of these young men and realize that no matter the difference, team, appearance, or ideas there is a lot in common if we can look for the good. I salute these young men who reached out to a fellow high school player who for the next 5 months of his senior year will be completely different than what his plans would be. Thank you, Maple Mountain football players, for showing us that there are things bigger than Friday night lights on the football field."