Investigators are hoping that a young man stabbed during a fight behind a high school on Sunday can identify his attackers – and lead them to the people who killed his friend.

Twenty-year-old Jack Nielson is in hospital recovering after being assaulted by a group of men while he and Devon Allaire Bell were playing soccer behind Frank Hurt Secondary School.

Nielson's friend, David, said that he may be able to tell homicide investigators what happened now that he is conscious and able to talk.

"I don't know how much he's actually talked to them but I know he's willing and able to," said David, who became close with Jack 12 years ago while volunteering for Big Brothers.

David said he and Jack often played soccer on the school fields where he was attacked.

"It's just senseless violence," he told CTV News Tuesday, breaking into tears. "The guys that did it have to come forward and take responsibility for it."

Devon Allaire Bell graduated from high school last year. His mother told CTV News he was a healthy and athletic student.

Last night, friends gathered near the scene of the crime to comfort Devon's mother and father.

There are reports several men were seen running from the area, and investigators believe the suspects fled southwest through a park area that leads to 76 Avenue.

No arrests have been made. Police say the suspects are all Indo-Canadian men around 20 years old and dressed in dark clothing.

With a report from CTV British Columbia's Lisa Rossington