The Tecumseh Warriors soccer team played their first game of the season Wednesday in honour of a special teammate.

Members of the under-12 squad paid tribute to Aja Chandler, the 11-year-old who died in March from playing the ‘choking game.’

The team had one player short on the field for the first 18 minutes, to honour the Belle River girl who used to wear number 18.

Players were holding back tears as teammates handed purple roses to family members.

“I couldn't miss it for the world to be here and remember Aja," says her father, Joe Chandler.

Both teams also put only ten players on the field instead of eleven. The team also intends to retire Aja’s jersey number.

The score was 8-0 for the Warriors.

Head coach Stacey Ditchfield says the team wanted to honour Chandler’s spirit.