An Eastern Kentucky city has announced it will no longer hold a championship tournament for its local T-ball league after parents and coaches got into a fight during a game.
The Stanton Parks and Recreation Board announced Tuesday night it was getting rid of the tournament and removing scorekeeping from the city’s T-ball games for 5- and 6-year-old players. The changes were made because an argument between coaches and game officials turned into a physical altercation in the middle of the field during the tournament finale Monday night. The board also promised discipline against participants without revealing details.
The city announced a new zero-tolerance policy for verbally assaulting umpires, referees, scorekeepers or any other game officials at any sports league hosted by Stanton Parks and Recreation.
“This applies to coaches, players, and spectators,” Stanton Parks and Recreation said in a Facebook post. “Umpires should eject the offending party immediately if this rule is violated. An individual who is ejected will not be allowed to return as a coach, player, or spectator to that league for the remainder of the season.”
The city will also now require all T-ball teams to place players at assigned positions. “Player grouping” is no longer allowed.
“Our goal is to facilitate a safe and fun environment for everyone who attends or participates in leagues hosted by the Stanton City Park,” the parks and recreation department said.
Videos from Monday night’s game appeared to show coaches from both Little League teams get into an argument. One coach appeared to throw his hat down before another man came onto the field, started shoving people, and took his shirt off.
Additional videos showed more adults involved in the ensuing altercation that also included a loud argument with spectators. A coach later said on Facebook that the dispute started over a bad call.
The game was called off due to the fight. Both coaches later took responsibility on social media and said they hoped both their teams could be named co-champions.
Stanton Parks and Recreation said it was still going through videos and reports it received from the incident.
“While there will be disciplinary actions taken against individuals, we will not be discussing those publicly,” Stanton Parks and Recreation said in its social media statement.
Charges could be pressed against some of the people involved, depending on what was turned up through investigation, the Stanton Police Department said.
“We’re going to speak to everybody that we can, and if the (Powell) county attorney recommends charges, that’s what we’ll do,” Sgt. Ian Morton said.
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