COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - As the Columbus community mourns the death of baseball Coach David Pollard, the Carver High School baseball team took the field for the first time without its leader and father figure.
Pollard was killed in a three-vehicle accident involving a stolen car on Monday. Even though the game was played at Shaw High School's stadium, the Carver Tigers received a warm welcome and tons of support all afternoon, honoring the memory of the fallen coach.
The 36-year-old coach and special education teacher was on his way to buy equipment for Monday's game against LaGrange High School when he was fatally injured in a three-car accident on the intersection of Buena Vista Road and Andrews Road.
Carver High 3rd baseman Demarcus Beacham said Pollard was a close friend and father figure.
"He'd text me every day asking me, 'what can we do to be better on the team?" Beacham said.
Before the game started, both teams stepped out of the dugouts to have a moment of silence, honoring Pollard.
Shaw and Carver players both wore blue ribbons on their uniforms, in support of the fallen educator.
After the game, all the players huddled on the pitching mound to pray together for Coach Pollard and his family.
His players and fellow coaches plan on continuing his legacy of dedication and hard work on the field and in the classroom.
"He laid the groundwork. We just have to be able to follow it," said Carver baseball coach Andy Hicks. "With all the time and dedication he put in, it's hard to follow that up. It's hard to fill those shoes."
Police continue to search for the suspect who drove the stolen vehicle which killed Pollard.