Pittsford footballers, fans accused of using racial slurs during match
Students and fans at Pittsford Mendon High School are accused of using racist slurs against black opponents during boys-girls soccer matches against Greece Arcadia earlier this week, the latest episode embarrassing for Pittsford.
The incidents reportedly occurred on Tuesday at the boys ‘soccer match and at the girls’ soccer match on Wednesday, just as other Pittsford students were staging a protest against racism. Both matches were held at Pittsford Mendon.
Fans of the boys’ soccer game reportedly made monkey noises at Black Greece Arcadia players on Tuesday.
In an email Friday night, Greece Arcadia boys’ football coach Matt Vergamini stressed that the Pittsford Mendon players were not at fault.
“My players and I want to make sure that their team is not included in the actions that have taken place off the pitch,” he wrote.
Rumella Cameron, the mother of Greek footballer Arcadia, said on Wednesday her daughter texted her after the girls’ game to tell her that a Pittsford Mendon player called one of his teammates a n- —-, and that the other players and people in the stands had also used insults.
“She’s been playing since fourth grade and this is the first time this has happened,” Cameron said. “She was very pissed off.”
Her daughter did not attend training on Thursday and was unsure whether she would play her next game on Friday, she said.
Greece spokeswoman Laurel Heiden confirmed the nature of the allegations and said the two districts were working together to investigate them and “determine the appropriate next steps.”
Pittsford spokeswoman Nancy Wayman also said there was a joint investigation. “As with any allegation of this nature, the school district takes it very seriously and is investigating fully,” she wrote in an email.
If true, the football match allegations would be the latest in a series of acts of racism by Pittsford students.
The east side neighborhood was already in turmoil this week because of a video that shows a white college student holding a realistic-looking airsoft gun and threatening to kill black people, using an insult to describe them.
In another recent case, college students texted each other using the same racial slurs and saying black people should be enslaved.
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From 2014 : Pittsford Sutherland students chant racial slurs during basketball game
Rumella Cameron said she was eager to learn more about the results of the investigation and the consequences, if any, that Pittsford students will suffer.
At the same time, she said she was impressed to see a large group of students from Pittsford Mendon and Sutherland come out of class on Wednesday to protest the racist acts of their classmates and the lukewarm backlash from the district.
“I thought it was amazing to see them have the courage to stand up for what is right,” she said. “They’re the ones there, so if they feel it’s swept under the rug, it’s good that they do something about it.”
Contact editor Justin Murphy at [email protected]