High school player dies from injury

A Kansas high school football player died early Friday after he was knocked unconscious during a long, high-scoring game Thursday night.

Nathan Stiles, a senior running back and linebacker at Spring Hill High School in Spring Hill, Kansas, was taken by helicopter to a nearby hospital after suffering the injury in a game against Osawatomie High, the Kansas City Star reported. He died around 4 a.m.

After the game, Spring Hill coach Anthony Orrick said: “I think he just hit the ground pretty hard with his head. He came on the sideline and told one of my assistants ‘my head is really hurting,” according to KSHB-TV.

The coach then said Stiles sat down on the bench, stood up and collapsed, according to KSHB. The TV station also reported that the coach said Nathan had suffered a concussion earlier in the season.

The school district has not officially commented on the nature of the injury, reports said.

“The district’s primary concern is for the Stiles family and the many students and staff members that are affected by this tragedy,” a school district statement said.

Stiles was also the homecoming king at Spring Hill, the Star reported, a school with about 580 students.

Spring Hill won the game by a wild score of 99-72. Jeff Gulley, sports editor and publisher of the Osawatomie Journal, said Stiles had been tackled near the sideline just before hafltime.

“It was just a normal tackle from what I saw,” Gulley said, according to the Star.

Stiles had run for a 65-yard touchdown and an 18-yard touchdown before he collapsed, Gulley said.

“He was running a lot,” Gulley said. “There wasn’t anything to suggest anything was wrong.”

Spring Hill officials said counselors are on site for students and staff, the Kansas City Star reported.