JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A local high school soccer team is playing for more than a win these days, as its teammate, Alex Horton, is in the hospital after a serious car crash.
Friday night’s soccer game was fairly typical, but the players were thinking about Horton.
As Horton was driving in South Carolina with her sisters, a piece of concrete hit the windshield and smashed into her face.
“She’s good. Due to the surgery, she has bandages and stuff on her face, but she was being her bubbly self and making jokes and laughing,” Paige Hunt said. “So it was cool to get to talk to her and spend a little bit of time with her in between naps and everything.”
Hunt explained Horton had cranial surgery. Her nose will need reconstruction and she’s going to have feature surgeries, too.
Horton’s coach, Jennifer Rodriguez, explained the crash was even more devastating because Horton has battled injuries for the past two soccer seasons.
" ... Her last two years, (she had) ACL tears," Rodriguez said. “I think her college -- she was just going to focus on her studies, and just she just wanted one more year."
The center forward remains positive.
“She was so excited to get to play her senior year, and then this happened,” Hunt said. “It was really heartbreaking for all of us, but she always has such a positive outlook on everything.”
In Horton’s absence, the team has dedicated every game to her, saying they’re “For Alex.”
Her coach had this message: “Just (that) we love you. We’re thinking about you every day. We’re praying for you, and we just can’t wait for you to get home and get strong, and we love you.”
Horton’s next surgery is Sunday.
On Friday night, the team won 3-0 and remains undefeated.