12-year-old with Down syndrome scores his first touchdown

Posted at 10:27 PM, Oct 13, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-13 22:42:22-04

MARSHALL, Mich. -- There are few things 12-year-old Connor Fish loves more than football.

"I have videos from when he was really little and I'd get up in the middle of the night and I’d come down and he would have his helmet on, watching a football game that we had taped," Connor's mom Kristin Fish said.

Most of Connor’s football memories are made with his brother Austin in their backyard.

"It’s difficult to have your child love a sport so much and not be able to play in it," Kristin added.

Connor has Down syndrome and as much as loves to play, he’s had to coach from the sidelines, since his brother began playing tackle football a few years back.

"Connor likes to give speeches before the games and at halftime he gets everybody riled up," said Connor's father, Adam Fish.

Connor is used to giving the speeches but this weekend, for the first time, he was hyping himself up.

"The coaches had contacted Adam about asking if they could let Connor run a play in the game which was obviously awesome to us," Kristin said.

"So on the day before the game, Adam went and got the jersey for him and everything and brought it home and so we got him ready for the game on Saturday," Kristin explained.

"He got to go up with the captains and he got to be one and he was on the sidelines in football gear, watching the game, waiting for his moment because he just couldn’t wait. When he finally got to do it he just ran out to the field," Austin Fish said.

Connor’s moment came with a few seconds left in the fourth quarter, his Marshall team was trailing Pennfield by a couple scores.

"Over the loudspeaker they announced the play and they said they were bringing out their secret weapon," Kristin said.

The secret weapon draped in his number 90 uniform made his way out to the field for the first time.

"We called a timeout with maybe one or two seconds left on the clock, because we wanted the score to actually be on that scoreboard for Connor," said Pennfield Coach, Jeremy Spinney.

"This is bigger than a football game, its about being a good teammate, being a good person, its about being a good person in school, so we preach that as part of our everyday practice and when this opportunity came about we were all about it," Jeremy added.

The ball was snapped and Connor ran like the wind, he made it all the way to the end zone.

"I ran like I run when I practice with my brother in the backyard," Connor said.

"The best part is when they lifted him up on their shoulders and they were chanting Connor, he was smiling he was having fun he was really happy," Pennfield sixth grader Alex Spinney, said.

A million dollar smile, for a priceless moment.

"It was cool seeing Connor get to do something he really likes doing," Austin said.