A high school hockey player died playing the game he loved when a puck struck him in the chest, stopping his heart and stunning classmates who said he had everything going for him.

"There are a lot of sad feelings here," Goodrich High School Principal Jon Kaiser said Wednesday, the day after Jeff Merrill's death. "You don't think it's going to happen to a 15-year-old."The accident occurred Tuesday night at a home game at the Fond du Lac County Fairgrounds ice rink.

Merrill was knocked off his feet by a body check. As he fell, an unidentified teammate shot the puck, hitting the sophomore in an unpadded section of his upper left chest just slighty to the left and below his heart.