Pinckney football player's touchdown is highlight of season for team

High school team sets up special play for special teammate

A local high schooler with autism scored a 70-yard touchdown.
A local high schooler with autism scored a 70-yard touchdown.

PINCKNEY, Mich. – Adam Clay has been walking the halls of Pinckney High School like a celebrity.

His autism is a challenge but it hasn't kept him from being a football team favorite.

"He's only seen a couple of plays on defense over 2 years," said Adam Sieler, an offensive lineman on the team.

In the last game of the season -- which was the final of Adam's career -- the players he calls brothers repaid him for his hard work and loyalty. He joined the offensive huddle as a wide receiver.

"I don't know if he said he would throw it to me, just that he was throwing it," said Clay.

He turned and caught it, and 70 yards later he was in the end zone.

"I just remember yelling, 'Go Adam!!'" said his mother, Barbara Clay.

"They were cheering me on, and yelling my name," said Adam Clay.

"It's important to me that he's accepted, that he knows people love him," said his mom.

South Lyon was down by four touchdowns before Adam's play, and frustrated. However, they learned opportunities to win sometimes come in disguise.

"I'll remember them as a team that thought of more than just themselves. To me, it's a victory for them," said Jakob Gailitis, Pinckney High School football coach.

Adam said he felt like a champion.

"It's a dream come true," he said.

The goal was to give Adam a great memory, but a funny thing happened on the way to the end zone. Everyone who witnessed this magic moment said it was their top highlight of the season, and it will be for many years to come.


Adam Clay jumps into the end zone.