DC Everest senior Mitchell Boals stiff-arms a Wausau East defender.
Not a single game goes by without Mitchell Boals making a big play for DC Everest.
"The team is kinda counting on me to do everything I can," Boals said. "And i try to go out there and play my heart out every play."
But 11 months ago, Mitchell was clinging to his life.
"When they come in and tell you, something horrible is wrong," recalled mom Toni Boals, "shoot I have to hold it together, its the hardest thing you have to do as a parent."
On October 19th of last season, Mitchell was injured in the fourth quarter of a game against Bay Port. Instead of taking the team bus home, he hopped in the car with his parents.
"We started heading down Hwy 41," said Steve Noals, Mitchell's Dad. "We could turn right and go to Wausau, or we could turn left and go to the hospital, and you got that tap on your shoulder that says...go left."
That left turn would end up saving Mitchell's life. He underwent emergency surgery to stop internal bleeding after doctors found a quart of blood in his abdomen. After a six day stay in the hospital Mitchell returned home, still uncertain about his future in football.
"I mean, it's a serious injury. Maybe things wouldn't come out like I want them, too," said Mitchell.
Steve added, "at the end of the day I said, 'I love you, you don't have to play this game anymore,' and he looked me square in the eye and said, 'what are you talking about?"
Less than 6 months after his surgery, Mitchell was at 100 percent for the Everest track and field team with this football season in sight.
"I never doubted he'd come back," his mom said.
"I trained every day. I ran. I mean, it wasn't easy at all. Football is my escape, its my sanctuary, when I play football that's where my mind clears."
Now each time Mitchell takes the field, he never takes a single snap for granted.
"I know what its like, any play could be your last play."
With three weeks to play, the evergreens are 3-3 and will need those big Mitchell Boals plays.
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