MISERICORDIA UNIVERSITY, Pa. -- Kobe Bryant's tragic death has shaken fans all over the country and the world.
At Misericordia University in Luzerne County, students grew up watching the NBA star dominate the court.
"I was at a loss for words because I saw him play in Philadelphia, and he was actually one of the greatest basketball players that ever lived, and at 41 years old, it's tragic. Loss for words, honestly," said John Giangrieco, a student at Misericordia University.
Before his pro career, Bryant was a star at Lower Merion High School outside Philadelphia.
In 1996, he led his team to a PIAA state title, beating the Scranton Knights along the way.
Misericordia's men’s' basketball coach Will Chandler played for the Knights and remembers that game well.
"I was excited. I was 15 years old, and I didn't know any better. I'm going to go shut this guy down. I didn't know who he was, and that’s what it was, and that's what it was. We're all excited. Our whole team was excited to play Lower Merion, win or lose. We got to the second round of states, and we got to play the best player in the country. He was a killer on the court, and that's what I try to teach my guys to this day, and that's how I wanted to play," said Coach Chandler.
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Some said there is a lesson to be learned in Kobe Bryant's tragic death.
"I think it's something that should also motivate people because I think Kobe would probably be the first person that would want everyone to just continue like doing what they do and even do it harder because that's what he did," said Antonio Whyte, a Misericordia University student.