Lacrosse an­nouncer apol­o­gizes

Re­mark about Na­tive Amer­i­can player was ‘in­sen­si­tive’ he ad­mits.

The Morning Call - - STATE/REGION - The As­so­ci­ated Press

PHILADEL­PHIA — 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 Lyle Thomp­son said on so­cial me­dia that Philadel­phia Wings an­nouncer Shawny Hill said “Let’s snip the pony tail” 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 yell threats to “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.

Swarm team­mate Bren­dan Bomberry, who is from the Six Na­tions reser­va­tion in Canada, said on so­cial me­dia that the game was over­shad­owed by the words, say­ing “‘Let’s snip the braid’ was dis­gust­ing and a re­al­ity for my an­ces­tors when they were forced into Chris­tian res­i­den­tial schools.”

Hill apol­o­gized on so­cial me­dia for “in­sen­si­tive” words he called “poorly cho­sen” and “not in­tended as racially mo­ti­vated.”

“My words 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.”

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