Grundy Center football players talk about 'The Hug' photo - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Grundy Center football players talk about 'The Hug' photo

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It was a hard fought battle on the football field Friday night in Fairbank.

"They fought back and ended up beating us by four," said Jordan Stoner, Grundy Center football player.

Wapsie Valley beat Grundy Center 21 to 17.

Of course Jordan Graham and Jordan Stoner were disappointed they lost, but that didn't matter minutes after the clock ran out.

"There's more to football than just winning and losing and when you see somebody that went down like Andrew did, you just feel human and feel empathy for their school and their community," said Graham, Grundy Center football player.

Wapsie Valley's quarterback, Andrew Buzynski, scored the winning touchdown, but a few plays later he collapsed. He was taken off the field with a head injury.

JScott Images captured a photo of Grundy players Graham and Stoner consoling a player from the other team, Wapsie's Jake Kulmann. Since the photo has been posted to Facebook, more than 100,000 people have seen it across the nation.

"For a while we just sat there and embraced. After a while I just let him know that us as the Spartans would be pulling for their community and praying for Andrew," said Graham.

Head coach Brent Thoren says he saw a lot of his players consoling the other team that night, even coaches. He says he's proud of his boy for showing such great sportsmanship, but he says that behavior should really be expected.

"This is what the expectation should be as opposed to the exception to the rule. You would think that any team regardless of if it was up or anybody else would have done the same thing," said Thoren.

Coach Thoren also told us that although it's great to see this type of sportsmanship, the focus should be on Andrew Buzynski and his recovery.

Update: Andrew's father Scott says Andrew was released from the hospital on Friday, and visited classmates at school. He'll be at home recovering for the next few days, and then will gradually start going back to classes.

Adam Amdor contributed to this report.

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