Announcer apologizes for remark; team, league vow discipline
An announcer has apologized for a remark about a Native American player during a lacrosse game that he and the team called “insensitive,” with both team and league vowing disciplinary action. Georgia Swarm forward and Chesapeake Bayhawk Lyle Thompson said on social media that Philadelphia Wingspublic address announcer ShawnyHillsaid, “Let’s snip the ponytail” during Saturday night’s game at the Wells Fargo Center, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. Thompson, who is from the Onondaga Reservation in Central New York, said fans began to shout “scalp” him. “I know Philly takes pride in their ruthless fans but I didn’t know it was like that lol. now I know,” he said, adding that he hadn’t heard “stuff like this” since high school. Hill apologized on social media for “insensitive” words he called “poorly chosen” and “not intended as racially motivated.” “Mywords do not reflect my personal beliefs, but represent a lack of knowledge on heritage and history,” he said, adding that he was reaching out to speak to Thompson and his brother, Miles, also on the team, “in hopes of providing a direct apology.” The National Lacrosse League said in a statement that it and member clubs have a “zero tolerance policy for any derogatory or discriminatory statements.” The league said “necessary disciplinary action will be taken swiftly.” The Philadelphia Wings said in a statement it was “deeply apologetic” for what it called “this inadvertent yet offensive occurrence” and vowed “swift disciplinary and educational measures” to prevent similar episodes. Thompsonwasselectedfirst overall in the 2015 Major League Lacrosse draft by the Florida Launch and was traded to the Bayhawks in 2017. He played in four games for the Bayhawks in 2018 after returning from an injury, scoring 11 goals. his career by defeating Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakhstan, 6-1, 6-7 (3-7), 6-3, 6-2, at the 2017 Australian Open. He fell in the opening round last year in Melbourne. Tiafoe, an alumnus of the Junior Tennis Champions Center in College Park, is coming off a 2018 season in which he secured his first ATP Tour title with a victory at the Delray Beach (Fla.) Open, becoming the youngest American to win a title since Andy Roddick won at age 19 in 2002 in Houston. Denis Kudla, a fellow JTCC alum from Ukraine, faces Australia’s Marc Polmans in the first round. ESPN and Tennis Channel will have full television coverage of the tournament.