Patrick Dinsmore, 16, collapsed during a minor football match in County Down on Sunday night and was pronounced dead on the spot.
A number of doctors and nurses who were attending the game in Rosetrevor, Co. Down, endeavored for 35 minutes to save Dinsmore's life but it was too late.
They used a defibrillator to try and resuscitate the young player but to no avail.
Dinsmore was due to celebrate his 17th birthday on Tuesday.
A student at St. Colman's secondary school in Newry, Co. Down, Dinsmore was playing with local team St. Peter's of Warrenpoint against St. Bronagha's when he collapsed.
Doctors said he was standing on the pitch on his own when he just fell.
Down are scheduled to play against Co. Kildare this coming weekend in the All-Ireland Senior Football Semi-Finals at Croke Park in Dublin but SDLP councillor Michael Carr said Dinsmore's death "has cast a dark shadow over everything."
"It's every parent's worst nightmare," said Carr.
"This really is a devastating, utterly devastating, death of a fine young man."
Added Carr, "The local area is finding it hard to come to terms with it as the young lad was so well thought of and was taking part in something he loved, representing his local community."
It is unclear at this time what caused Dinsmore's death.