Opposing team offers prayer during game after learning of injured player

Oct 7, 2022, 9:35 AM

COTTONWOOD HEIGHTS, Utah — Dax Johnson tried his best to push through the pain at youth football practice last week but after heading home that night, he knew something was wrong.

“I had a headache, a big one and I was throwing up all night,” Dax Johnson said.

Dax’s coach, Johnny Johnson, said some of the players were playing around before practice last week when Dax got hurt.

“A boy pushed him and he fell over and hit his head. He’s a tough dude so he didn’t tell anybody,” Johnson said.

Dax went the whole practice without saying anything. But by the time he got home he was in agonizing pain.

“It just kept nagging him on for quite some time for, you know, the rest of the night,” his father David Johnson said.

The family took him to the hospital where they learned he had a concussion. He was out of the game, including their next match against a team in Cottonwood Heights that coming weekend.

“It was something Dax was looking forward to doing,” his father said.

When the opposing team learned about what happened they came together on the field for a group prayer. His coach was touched by the gesture.

“I get emotional because it was so cool. At the end of the game it was overtime it was a super close game,” Johnny Johnson said. “We go to shake their hand and the coach is saying ‘hey let’s get together.’”

Coaches on the opposing team said this was a teaching moment for all the players on that field that day at the Cottonwood Heights Recreation Center.

“Honestly it just felt like the right thing to do,” coach Todd Reese said. “What it teaches is those kids that maybe can’t play for whatever reason, they are important.”

Dax was at home recovering and could not attend the game. But when he heard about what happened and saw the video of the prayer, he was overwhelmed by the support.

“I’m grateful that they did that and I love my brothers on the team,” he said.

His coach said Dax has since been cleared to play. Depending on how both teams do this season, they may meet up again for another game. He said both teams now share a special bond because of this act of kindness.

“That moment was special and the boys will remember that forever,” Johnny Johnson said.

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Opposing team offers prayer during game after learning of injured player