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The following is an archived video story. The text content of that video story is available below for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available.

Basketball Team Rallies Around Injured Teammate

BELLBROOK -- A high school student is battling back from serious injuries, athletes across the Miami Valley are putting competition aside to support him and his family.

Payne Sigman, a junior at Bellbrook High School, was seriously injured in a car crash Jan. 19. He had been in a coma and is now slowly recovering at a Columbus hospital.

"I've been best friends with Payne Sigman for 12 years, since kindergarten. I've been playing basketball with him and sports, since the third grade and before that, so I thought I lost my best friend," Bellbrook junior Josh Rogers said.

The Bellbrook basketball team had to make a difficult decision about whether to play with their teammate in the hospital.

"Basketball becomes very irrelevant at that point," Bellbrook Coach Perry Caldwell said.

Senior Austin Hall said he was ready to play, for Sigman and in honor of him.

The Golden Eagles haven't missed a game.

And not only has the community come out to support Sigman, every opponent has worn shirts during warmups to show their support as well. The shirts display the hashtag #play4payne on their backs.

"Teams can put rivalries aside and realize there is something more important than a game," Coach Caldwell said. "It's nice to have something different to think about, because I know a lot of these guys spent a lot of time down at the hospital."

While Bellbrook was trying to capture a conference championship, the season has taken on a new significance.

"There's a new meaning for playing, for putting all I have on the court for him, for what he would give and what I would give, so I gotta do 200 percent better," Rogers said.

 
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