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Texas girls hoops team seeks forfeit of 100-0 win


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DALLAS - A Texas high school girls basketball team on the winning end of a 100-0 game has a case of blowout remorse. Now officials from The Covenant School say they are trying to do the right thing by seeking a forfeit and apologizing for the margin of victory.

"It is shameful and an embarrassment that this happened," Kyle Queal, the head of the school, said in a statement, adding the forfeit was requested because "a victory without honor is a great loss."

The private Christian school defeated Dallas Academy last week. Covenant was up 59-0 at halftime.

A parent who attended the game told The Associated Press that Covenant continued to make 3-pointers - even in the fourth quarter. She praised the Covenant players but said spectators and an assistant coach were cheering wildly as their team edged closer to 100 points.

"I think the bad judgment was in the full-court press and the 3-point shots," said Renee Peloza, whose daughter plays for Dallas Academy. "At some point, they should have backed off."

Dallas Academy coach Jeremy Civello told The Dallas Morning News that the game turned into a "layup drill," with the opposing team's guards waiting to steal the ball and drive to the basket. Covenant scored 12 points in the fourth quarter and "finally eased up when they got to 100 with about four minutes left," he said.

Dallas Academy has eight girls on its varsity team and about 20 girls in its high school. It is winless over the last four seasons. The academy boasts of its small class sizes and specializes in teaching students struggling with "learning differences," such as short attention spans or dyslexia.

There is no mercy rule in girls basketball that shortens the game or permits the clock to continue running when scores become lopsided. There is, however, "a golden rule" that should have applied in this contest, said Edd Burleson, the director of the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools. Both schools are members of this association, which oversees private school athletics in Texas.

"On a personal note, I told the coach of the losing team how much I admire their girls for continuing to compete against all odds," Burleson said. "They showed much more character than the coach that allowed that score to get out of hand. It's up to the coach to control the outcome."

In the statement on the Covenant Web site, Queal said the game "does not reflect a Christ-like and honorable approach to competition. We humbly apologize for our actions and seek the forgiveness of Dallas Academy, TAPPS and our community."

Covenant coach Micah Grimes did not immediately respond to a message left by The Associated Press on Thursday.

Queal said school officials met with Dallas Academy officials to apologize and praised "each member of the Dallas Academy Varsity Girls Basketball team for their strength, composure and fortitude in a game in which they clearly emerged the winner."

Civello said he appreciated the gesture and has accepted the apology "with no ill feelings."

At a shootaround Thursday, several Dallas Academy players said they were frustrated during the game but felt it was a learning opportunity. They also said they are excited about some of the attention they are receiving from the loss, including an invitation from Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban to see an NBA game from his suite.

"Even if you are losing, you might as well keep playing," said Shelby Hyatt, a freshman on the team. "Keep trying, and it's going to be OK."

Peloza said the coach and other parents praised the Dallas Academy girls afterward for limiting Covenant to 12 points in the fourth quarter. She added that neither her daughter nor her teammates seemed to dwell on the loss.

"Somewhere during that game they got caught up in the moment," Peloza said of the Covenant players, fans and coaches. "Our girls just moved on. That's the happy part of the story."

Source: The Onion.com

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I still can't believe that's even possible.

That is absolutely disgusting. Both sides of the story really.

I mean, can you really be bad enough to lose by 100, I guess.

And can you really be such a bad sport, that you continue to pound on the other team. I mean I woulda started slowing it up once it was 30-0 (or even less), but they didn't until 100. They need to be punished, really.

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I can't believe that no one on The Covenant School team, or among the fans thought of slowing down and being good sports. They just willfully humiliated a team of developmentally challenged girls.

I agree with LEWJ. There should be some disciplinary action taken, at the very least, against the coach.

EDIT: Dallas Morning News

Why should the coach be punished? Because his team won a game convincingly?

I'm not up to speed on high school basketball, but isn't there a shot clock still in play? How about the school/district system instituting a mercy rule, where the clock doesn't stop unless the game is within a certain amount of points? What do you suggest.....the coach telling his team to stop playing?

Props to the Dallas girls team, who saw this game as a character-building opportunity and didn't whine about the outcome of the game.

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I can't believe that no one on The Covenant School team, or among the fans thought of slowing down and being good sports. They just willfully humiliated a team of developmentally challenged girls.

I agree with LEWJ. There should be some disciplinary action taken, at the very least, against the coach.

EDIT: Dallas Morning News

Why should the coach be punished? Because his team won a game convincingly?

I'm not up to speed on high school basketball, but isn't there a shot clock still in play? How about the school/district system instituting a mercy rule, where the clock doesn't stop unless the game is within a certain amount of points? What do you suggest.....the coach telling his team to stop playing?

Props to the Dallas girls team, who saw this game as a character-building opportunity and didn't whine about the outcome of the game.

I expect the coach to exhibit the sportsmanship that he and all high school coaches should expect from their players. I also expect him to act accordingly as a representative of his school. He allowed and encouraged his players to be bullies and embarrassed his school.

I don't think this should cost him his job, I'm just talking about some sort of written documentation from his boss. The same sort of punishment you would expect for an infraction at work.

As far as the mercy rule you suggested, I wholeheartedly agree that this is a long term solution to avoiding this sort of scenario. In my 12 year old daughter's league, you can't press a team if you have a lead of 14 points (or something like that, I can't recall the score). When your opponent is inbounding, you have to remain on the other side of half court.

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Dallas Academy has eight girls on its varsity team and about 20 girls in its high school. It is winless over the last four seasons. The academy boasts of its small class sizes and specializes in teaching students struggling with "learning differences," such as short attention spans or dyslexia.

Reminds me of this

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Why should the coach be punished? Because his team won a game convincingly?

I'm not up to speed on high school basketball, but isn't there a shot clock still in play? How about the school/district system instituting a mercy rule, where the clock doesn't stop unless the game is within a certain amount of points? What do you suggest.....the coach telling his team to stop playing?

on the shot clock: I don't know about Texas, but I know here in Wisconsin, there isn't. For the life of me, I don't know any good reason they shouldn't start using it.

on the mercy rule: appropriately enough, our football mercy rule is basically what you're suggesting: if you're up by 40 or more by the start of the third quarter, the clock doesn't stop.

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Well, here we go again.

This is shameful. Really. I'm not sure what to make of the head of the school wanting to hand the girls the game. Really, I think the coach needs to be disciplined. Fired? Maybe not, but I should think a suspension would be in order. If I'm the referee, I start throwing in a few phantom traveling calls.

In the leagues that I've refereed / coached / scorekept, there were rules in place to prevent teams from pressing when they got a 15 point lead. I think that needs to be enforced more. There should also be a rule that once you get a 30 point lead, all baskets are worth two points. You want to shoot from 25 feet out? Fine. It's still as much as a layup. You don't need the extra point.

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Full disclosure, I came from a high school that had (and still has) a very good basketball team.

In my opinion, a mercy rule should be unnecessary, as sportsmanship should prevail. First things first, everybody should have played, and the backups should have seen significant playing time. Second, there comes a point to slow the tempo down - most states do not have a shot clock (my state does not). Third, we don't need to see three point shots that late in the game.

I am thankful that my school has a coach who understands sportsmanship. It is a shame that a mercy rule would be needed to deal with coaches that didn't get it.

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I read this yesterday on Yahoo, and have been pondering it since. There is a dilema here of now forfeiting the game in my mind. Here is the debate, because I could not act accordingly when beating you, I should forfeit the game to you. I think it needs to go a step further.

If I were the coach I would suggest maybe that the team showing bad sportsmenship in the case, be encourage to go support this team. They can do this is several ways, when they play a game show up to support them, cheer for them and become a fan of their courage to face odds. Two they could offer practice help etc.

I don't really know the answers I am thinking more outloud here. As for the game itself, once a head they needed to get their superior players off the floor, work on some skills, slow down the game and make it about learning rather then a win lose situation.

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"short attention spans and dyslexia" may be disabilities but it's not like they were playing against kids with cerebral palsy or downs syndrome.

I agree with baseballking, this game simply never should have been played at all.

What were they supposed to do as it went on? Shoot into the wrong basket? Commit deliberate turnovers?

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Really the game never should have happened. Nobody had an idea this team was that bad?

That's pretty much where my mind was while reading this. I'm not sure how Texas structures their athletics but, where I went to school, these two teams wouldn't EVER play each other. Whoever scheduled the game needs to shoulder the blame. Leave the team and the coach alone.

If you put a team on the court, they should be expected play to win. If you're so far ahead that you'll coast to victory, put in the reserves. But, those reserves should still be playing all-out, too.

Are people seriously calling for someone to be disciplined for winning? Those are the people that disgust me.

If they cheated, punish them. But if they played a clean game, I'd rather they steamrolled their way to an easy win than see them lay back and deliberately play a mediocre game. If they're going to win easy, they're going win regardless. If a team needs to be held back because the opponent isn't competitive, that's the first sign they shouldn't be playing against each other.

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As bad as this Dallas Academy team is portrayed, Covenant should have started their bench for the game. That said, I think if you field a team, nothing should be handed to you. I agree that having these two teams face each other was ridiculous. I don't think, however, that the winning team should feel guilty for playing their normal game. If I were a Dallas Academy player, I'm pretty sure that someone going easy on me out of pity would piss me off worse than getting beat by such a large margin.

Thirty years ago, we wouldn't have been ringing our hands over a win in such a mismatch. Most would have commented on how awful one team was, and then it would have been forgotten by most. If Dallas Academy wants to compete, then use this game as motivation to either get better or hire a better coach. After watching the clip on ABCNews of Dallas' practice, I'm not convinced any handicapping would make any match up of theirs competitive.

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