Perry Hall wide receiver Nick DiPaula felt fine Saturday after being knocked out briefly and suffering a concussion in Friday night’s home football game against Overlea, Perry Hall coach Keith Robinson said.
Knocked out by a tackle after catching a touchdown pass in the end zone, the senior was transported by ambulance to Johns Hopkins Hospital but was released a few hours later.
"His dad said he’s doing fine and he wants to play next week which probably won’t happen,” Robinson said. “They sent him (to Johns Hopkins) as a precaution. On the field, he was responsive and asking questions, but he did lose consciousness for a good, probably, 20 seconds so that’s why we sent him in the ambulance.”
DiPaula suffered the injury when he was tackled after catching the game's final touchdown, a 10-yard pass from quarterback Reece Wiseman, in the No. 14 Gators’ 31-8 win over their neighboring Baltimore County rivals.
“He caught the ball in the end zone. He got one foot down. Just as the second foot was coming down and he was going down to the ground, the Overlea kid came and hit him," Robinson said.
"Nick was turned and his back was toward the kid and the Overlea kid came with his shoulder right into his back and the back of his head. It was a pretty nasty hit, but I don’t really think it was malicious. Whether or not it was already established that Nick was down ... It was just kind of bang-bang.”
The play happened in the third quarter, but both coaches agreed to end the game at that point, Robinson said, because the rivalry was beginning to overheat. The Overlea player who tackled DiPaula was ejected from the game, Robinson said.
“I think the game was pretty much over at that point,” Robinson said. “The kids were pretty hot, tempers were starting to flare, so it was the right decision.”