IHSAA Investigating Friday Night Fight

By Max Resnik

September 26, 2011 Updated Sep 26, 2011 at 5:46 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) – The brawl that concluded the game between North Side High School and Snider High School is now being investigated by both the IHSAA and the Fort Wayne Community Schools.

The melee occurred during a routine postgame handshake between the teams. North Side High School won the game by a final of 19-16 in a battle of Summit Athletic Conference rivals.

In a postgame interview just after the fight, North Side High School Head Coach Ryan Hall said his players were defending themselves.

“If a kid’s going to punch our kid, I tell him to go, but if he’s going to keep on punching him, I don’t know. What do you do? I don’t know, so it’s unfortunate. It was a great football game, and it shouldn’t be shadowed by this because that’s just a few kids who are upset.”

Krista Stockman, Public Information Officer for the Fort Wayne Community Schools, says the conduct of both schools was unacceptable.

“We don’t condone this kind of behavior, and we expect that our coaches will teach our student-athletes that this is not acceptable. And we will be meeting with the coaches to talk about that.”

Robert Faulkens, Assistant Commissioner of the Indiana High School Athletic Association, said neither the schools nor the game’s referees levied any complaint with the IHSAA. He says the IHSAA did receive a letter from a parent who was concerned over “disgusting behavior” by North Side High School’s players. The IHSAA plans to conduct an investigation into the fight.

Stockman says there is no room for fighting in high school football.

“While things may get emotional, we still expect for players to act appropriately and for coaches to teach them how to act appropriately.”

This is the second time this year that North Side High School has been embroiled in an on-field scandal. In a game at the beginning of the season versus Hunting North High School, allegations of racist taunting and cheap shots were the subject of controversy between the two teams.

Stockman says both North Side High School and Snider High School have turned in great football seasons, but their passion for winning cannot override sportsmanship.

“Both sides on Friday night played very well and it was a hard fought win for North Side. They’ve had a great season, but we don’t believe in winning at any cost.”

Indiana’s NewsCenter will provide updates to both the IHSAA’s investigation and FWCS’ investigation as they become available.

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