CWU Football Player Recovers from Stabbing While Police Look for Suspects - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

CWU Football Player Recovers from Stabbing While Police Look for Suspects

YAKIMA, Wa -  A Central Washington University football player is recovering from multiple stab wounds.  Meanwhile, Ellensburg Police is looking for suspects.

Police say sophomore linebacker Steve Sakalia was attacked early Saturday morning, just off campus on the 700 block of 18th Avenue.  They say Sakalia had to receive CPR at the scene, but the university tells kndo he's doing much better and could be back at school as early as next week.  

"They did not know if he was going to be able to pull through or not," says John Zamberlin, head coach of the Central Washington University football team.

When he first got the call from police things did not look good for his sophomore linebacker.  Zamberlin addressed the football team before they boarded buses to take them to their game against Eastern Washington that evening in Cheney. 

He says just before talking with the team, he got a call that Sakalia was doing much better.

"We're just so excited that he's going to be okay," says Zamberlin.  He talked with Sakalia again today and he's well enough to walk around. 

Ellensburg Police is not saying much about the incident.  Captain Ross Green says the investigation is active and the information they do have is sensitive.  They did say Sakalia had been at a party earlier that night, but believe he was attack on the street, or the sidewalk.  He says they have recovered some evidence from the scene, and that they are talking to some people.  He says they did execute a search warrant in relation to the case and arrested someone, but say he is not a suspect.

Zamberlin says he doesn't know that much about the incident, but did talk to his players about what happened.

"We just talked about being smart," he says, "being aware of your situation and your environment."