Overland Park, Kan. - One of the area's top high school football players has died Friday after suffering a stroke during a Thursday night football game at Shawnee Mission South.
Andre Maloney, a senior at Shawnee Mission West High School, was one of the area's top wide receivers.
Here is a statement issued Friday from the Shawnee Mission School District:
"During Thursday night’s football game, Shawnee Mission West football player Andre Maloney suffered a stroke. He was transported to an area hospital for evaluation and treatment. He is currently receiving treatment in the intensive care unit at Research Medical Center. While the family greatly appreciates the concern, thoughts, and prayers of family, friends, and the community, they ask that the public and media respect their privacy at this time."
On Friday afternoon, about 200 students gathered on the football field to show solidarity and support for Maloney.
"I'm kind of in shock. There was a whole announcement asking everyone to pray for speedy recovery and put your prayers and thoughts with him," student Michelle Ness said.
Students wanted Maloney to know they were pulling for him.
"I used to play football with him and that's really my major thing," student Kevin Melendez said.
Counselors were on hand Friday for students who wanted to talk about the incident.
A few of Andre's teammates spent Friday morning at Research Hospital where he was in intensive care for treatment.
Andre's relatives allowed them into the hospital room to see their friend
"He wasn't awake or alert and he doesn't look like the same," said Mario Louis, Andre's friend and teammate, said after visiting him.
Another teammate, Isaiah Macklin, said that he was grateful the family allowed them to see Andre.
"We went up there this morning. We got to see him for a little bit," Macklin said.
Maloney earned the 41 Action Sports Hy-Vee Athlete of the Week award last month.
He scored two touchdowns in a Sept. 13 victory over Olathe South. Maloney ran back a punt 55 yards, ran for 41 yards and caught passes for another 121 yards.
Tim Callaghan, his coach, said Andre brought a positive attitude to the team and is a hard worker.
"Just can't ask enough, Callaghan told 41 Action News back in February. "What he does is everything you need out of a kid.''
Maloney was set to play for KU next year.
He was also a star in the classroom with a 3.7 grade point average.
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