Teammate honored before season opener
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PHOENIX, N.Y. -- There was a special tribute for a fallen teammate before the Phoenix football team's home opener. The crowd released orange and black balloons, and held a moment of silence to remember Ridge Barden on Friday afternoon.
Barden, 16, died after suffering a massive head injury during a game last October. The team's coach said it is a fitting tribute to a player that meant a lot to everyone.
"I think once those balloons go up in the air all the way to heaven, the orange and black balloons, Ridge will be able to see them, and I think our players will come out and play extremely hard tonight," noted Jeff Charles, Phoenix Head Football Coach.
In addition to the tribute, donations were also collected for a scholarship fund in Barden's name.