5th graders play hoops with student in wheelchair in sweet video

PHOTO: Third-grader Francis Veras Espinal throws a pass while playing basketball with 5th graders at Topsail Elementary School in Hempstead, N.C., Sept. 18, 2019.PlayCourtesy Pender County Schools
WATCH 5th graders play hoops with student in wheelchair in sweet video

It's not always the highest leapers or the best shooters who make the best basketball players -- sometimes it's those with the biggest hearts.

And a group of fifth graders at Topsail Elementary School in Hampstead, North Carolina, proved just that.

A heartwarming video captured the moment when a group brought Francis Veras Espinal, a third grader in a wheelchair, into their basketball game during recess.

PHOTO: Third-grader Francis Veras Espinal throws a pass while playing basketball with 5th graders at Topsail Elementary School in Hempstead, N.C., Sept. 18, 2019. Courtesy Pender County Schools
Third-grader Francis Veras Espinal throws a pass while playing basketball with 5th graders at Topsail Elementary School in Hempstead, N.C., Sept. 18, 2019.

Francis was pushed down the court, basketball in hand, passing it to another student who dunked it to loud cheers and applause.

The students surrounded him, sharing high-fives and giving him props for playing a great game.

Pender County Schools said in a statement that teachers first noticed the fifth graders inviting students from Topsail Elementary School’s adaptive Exceptional Children's program -- of which Espinal is a part -- to play with them during their shared recess on Tuesday.

The video, shot Wednesday by teacher Jody Keziah, shows the endearing moment when another group students included Francis in their basketball game.