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Bad Sportsmanship in D3 Girls ??

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Bad Sportsmanship in D3 Girls ?? Empty Bad Sportsmanship in D3 Girls ??

Post  Tuesday and Friday on Fri Mar 20, 2015 11:34 am

Very interesting article on Sportsmanship or perceived lack of it during some D3 playoff games last week. In my opinion, most of the stuff taking place, didn't cross the line into bad sportsmanship. A couple of things did. I'm just going by what I see at a lot of D1 and D2 boys' varsity games.

The newspapers being held up in front of student bodies faces when the other team's starting lineup is fun and adds to the ambiance of the evening. Student bodies chanting "air ball" after an air ball shot has been going on since I was a kid. Student bodies chanting "You can't do that" after an opposing player fouls has been going on since I was a kid. Foot stomping on opponent's foul shot? Maybe, some in this article should take in a Merrimack boy's game when the student body sits in back of the opponent's basket in one of the half's and waive their hands wildly during fouls shots WHILE stomping their collective feet.

I remember attending a big Central vs Trinity game at Trinity a few years ago. Mike Stys was the leader of Central and Ryan Bourgeois was the leader for Trinity. Both student body's had many things in their arsenal up their sleeves that night. It made for a GREAT atmosphere. Nothing went over the line, in my opinion, just good clean competitive banter between rival student body's. The best chant I remember was every time Ryan Bourgeois had the ball, the Central student body chanted:

BOOO GWAAHHH  BOO GWAAHHH  ......... It was funny and witty,

Now, chanting "loser loser" towards the end of the game crosses the line, but I thought for the most part the actions of the student bodies, in question, weren't egregiously out of bounds under the Sportsman-Like code. Maybe, I'm desensitized by attending so many D1 and D2 boy's varsity games, but I kind of think most of the behavior portrayed in this article by Student Body's were OK.  

Fouls called on local fans
Published Date Saturday, 07 March 2015 12:20

LACONIA — In recent days, fans who have shown up to support their local teams in the highly competitive NHIAA Division III Girls Basketball Tournament have been criticized for what some consider poor sportsmanship.
Susan Colby of Bristol, in particular, has been publicly critical of the behavior of Laconia fans, students and adults, at last Saturday night's quarter-final-round game between host Newfound and the Sachems.
"Oh my gosh," said Colby when reached on Thursday.
She said she was very glad to see that Laconia brought over 50 students to the game and the entire contingent of Sachem fans amounted to about a quarter of the total crowd. She said that at the encouragement of one the Laconia adults present, a group moved to seats behind the Newfound cheerleaders.
"On the first foul (shot by Newfound) they started stomping their feet, and I said to them that we don't do that here," she said. "They looked at me smugly."
Colby said that toward the end of the game, Newfound fans also started stomping their feet on the bleachers during Laconia's free throw attempts and she was equally disappointed in them.
She said the thing that upset her the most was the taunting when Laconia fans yelled "air ball" and "you can't do that" during free throw shots. At the end of the game, she said Laconia fans were yelling "loser" "loser".
Colby said one of her friends called Laconia school Superintendent Terri Forsten on Monday but she doesn't know if there was any conversation between the two.
Colby added that all of the athletes and their coaches on both sides were perfectly well behaved.
A Laconia High School student said Friday that he was also at the game. He said most of the crowd's behavior was "like you would see at any other game that you watch on television."
He said that toward the end of the game the people he was with started chanting "winning team" and "losing team", however Laconia Athletic Director Craig Kozens told them to stop.
"Some of the stuff we did was kind of rude," he said.
The student said there was also an altercation in the bleachers between one Newfound student and the mother of one of the Laconia players.
He said it started out as yelling but then the male Newfound student started to move toward the woman, "like he was going to get in her face" and his friend hauled him back and took him outside.
But according to photographer Alan MacRae, the Laconia crowd got a small taste of its own medicine on Tuesday, when their team played Gilford in a semi-final-round game in Manchester.
MacRae, assigned to cover the game by The Daily Sun, has been photographing high school, college and professional sports for just about his entire adult live. He is a retired police officer.
He said he was "appalled" by the behavior of Gilford's fans when they held up newspapers in front of their faces when the starting five players for Laconia were introduced before the game.
MacRae said there was no foot pounding on either side and, other than the newspapers, both sets of fans seemed well behaved. Both sides were loud, boisterous and supportive of their team and he said it was a close and very well-played game.
"Gilford has a formidable sports program," MacRae said, suggesting the fans, many of them adults, should mimic the good behavior of the athletes and coaches.
MacRae's larger concern is that student athletes are not all alike. "What if you're (taunting) got some kid who's "coded" meaning he or she has an individual education plan, or one who is shy or has ADD?"
"What if this kid was distraught?" he asked. "The average person can brush (taunting) off but some kids are more sensitive."
WEMJ radio sportscaster Keith Murray sees it a little differently than MacRae and Colby.
Murray has called games this year involving Gilford, Winnisquam Regional, Belmont, Inter-Lakes and Laconia teams.
He said someone also told him there was some "questionable behavior" at some of the games including foot stomping during foul shots. Murray said he "didn't think it was out of bounds."
He said most gymnasiums don't have seating behind the baskets and he said Laconia's fans at Newfound were "loud and energetic but not out of order."
Murray said he didn't hear any personal or verbal attacks on the players.
Nevertheless, Murray encourages civility and respect.
Murray also recalled fondly the games in the 1980s and early 1990s between Gilford and Laconia when they shared a superintendent.
"Now that was an intense rivalry," he said, noting both teams were very loud, very supportive but not generally out of order.
Gilford Superintendent Kent Hemingway said he was sorry to hear there were bad reports about the behavior of some of his team's fans in Manchester. He said he had staff and administrators at the game has heard "absolutely nothing".
He said Gilford, which won a NHIAA sportsmanship award in 2012-2013, has taken the rules of NHIAA very seriously.
Those rules dictate that all members are to act with a spirit of good sportsmanship and each school should have a set of procedures and policies to follow. The NHIAA rules say the principal of the school as building leader has this responsibility.
Efforts to contact Laconia High School Principal Jim McCollum this week were unsuccessful however, School Board Chair Joe Cormier said if the allegations about Laconia fans are true, he is very disappointed.
"We really don't tolerate this behavior and I am saddened to learn this," he said.
Superintendent Forsten said she was unable to be at either the game at Newfound or the semi-final game in Manchester, but said her administration is committed to promoting good sportsmanship with all of their teams.
"We've dedicated ourselves to good sportsmanship and we've seen that," she said.
"Our youth represent our community and we see good behavior most of the time." she said. Forsten said that instilling good behavior on the part of the students fans is generally very easy, however sometime adults will behave badly, somewhat tying the hands of the administrators.

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Post  8992 on Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:36 pm

I won’t name the school, but I did read an article in a local newspaper about another D3 playoff game where the home school fans were unruly and rude towards the opposing players. It wasn’t the kids from that high school, it was the adults!
The article caught my eye because my wife and I experienced the same thing 5 years ago at the same high school. It wasn’t the kids it was the adults attending the game! It got to the point where my wife and I had to change seats in the gym to avoid the rude comments (SWEARING) towards the opposing team and fans. Eventually I spoke to the attending AD who did nothing but look at me.


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Post  Tuesday and Friday on Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:43 pm

Well, swearing would obviously cross the Sportsmanship line and should be dealt with accordingly by game administrators.

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Post  JAF on Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:52 pm

"Sportsmanship" or the level of which we tolerate certain actions - everyone has their own definition of what "exactly" defines each. I know for sure that over the years that my boys helped lead cheers at BG basketball games the "rules of decorum" changed as did what was acceptable to chant. Nowadays, not much is tolerated. I do remember as a Nashua HS student oh so many years ago in the Skip Barry years that the student bodies were quite boisterous (shall we say - most of which cannot be printed any more!)...

Today school ADs are "competing" for their Sportsmanship awards (as evidenced by the Gilford Superintendent's reference to their award), so they perhaps are more sensitive to today's increasingly PC environments. What's "ironic" about swearing is I think it's even more prevalent in language today than I ever remember it growing up. Putting a newspaper up offended someone - wow! Guess they wouldn't appreciate turning your back and reading the newspaper either!

Personally I generally have no problem with student body chants - it helps make the atmosphere. Obviously there are some things that should never be said and lines that should never be crossed, but for the most part it's all a part of being a "fanatic". Facebook and Twitter do make it so much easier today to find out things about opponents to "tweak" them though Shocked ... I do take umbrage when parents start getting involved - especially at/towards student/fans and of course dealing with players, coaches, officials, etc. I think some believe that because they "pay" an entrance fee to a game, then they are entitled to act out. I had a partner this year tell me a story about some guy in a suit'n'tie that he had to request game management "babysit or remove"... Boggles my mind - way too serious... Too many parents still coach from the stands - if you want to coach, then "get a job" (good luck).

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