A Mississippi congregation mourns after a high school footballer collapsed and died at a game on Friday.
The Superintendent of Marshall County Schools said in a statement to FOX13 Memphis that 16-year-old Dennis Mitchell attended Byhalia High School about 30 miles southeast of Memphis, played an away game in Coahoma County.
"After his coaches, after a quarter and a half, the defensive lineman played off the field in the second quarter, and Hospital, but he never regained consciousness.
"After what the coroner said last night, we do not know how the cause of death," said the statement. "What we do know is that this is a tragedy and a huge loss for his family, our student body, faculty and staff. It's heart-rending! "
Friends of Mitchell told FOX13 that he was injured early in the game and started throwing in the field. After being taken out of the game, the 16-year-old later plunged back in and broke down after he started playing again.
TEXAS middle school footballer, 13, dies after medical emergency during practice
Christa Linville, who knew Mitchell since his elementary school, told WREG a similar series of events.
"He was off the sideline and he was ill," Linville told WREG. "He said he did not feel well, but just the kind of person he is, he did not want to abandon his team, so he kept playing, and it just went downhill from there."  According to Linville, the 16-year-old had hopes of bringing his talents to the NFL.
"He would have gone far," she said. "He was very good at school, he was very smart, whether he was playing football or not playing football, this boy was in the same place."
KANSAS COLLEGE FOOTBALL GAMES DIE AFTER TEAM'S FIRST SEASONAL PRACTICE
Family members and friends meet in Mitchell's honor Monday on the high school football field for a commemorative and balloon release, according to WREG. The cause of death continues to be investigated by officials.
The 16-year-old's death comes just days after a middle school footballer died in Texas after experiencing a medical emergency during training.
Fox News & # 39; Paulina Dedaj has contributed to this report.