A 12 year old softball team from Centerville won the championship at the Iowa Games this past weekend. Their victory party was short lived as a brawl broke out between a mother and the Centerville coach. According to the news story, the woman was unhappy about her daughter’s playing time and confronted the coach after the game and attacked him. As if that wasn’t enough, this woman’s 19 year old daughter decided to get involved and assaulted the coach’s wife. All three were arrested.
Read the story here: 3 Arrested after Softball Game
According to my sources, the coach was outweighed by the mother and had no choice but to hit her back to get her off of him. While I do NOT condone violence against women, I do believe that if she is going to punch like a man and fight like a man, she’d better expect to get hit back. You cannot physically attack someone and not expect that person to fight back.
Putting on my parent hat, I can understand and appreciate that Mother must have been frustrated watching her daughter on the bench. I can also understand that she let her emotions get out of control (obviously). Again, according to my sources, she also had gone in the dugout during the game to chew on the coach. Not to mention, she spent most of the game, spewing obscenties from the crowd. As a PARENT, you have the responsibility of exhibiting self control and checking your emotions. Getting hot headed does not give you permission to act crazy and assault another person. One responsibility you have as a parent is to set a good example for your children.
I’ve read a few comments in the original article where people are blaming organized sports in general for this, and because everything is so competive, this was bound to happen. Youth organized competitive sports are NOT the problem. The problem is the parents of these kids. You have the parents who were raised to work hard and achieve their success by the sweat of their own brow. THEN you have the parents who feel the world owes them and their offspring everything. It is either a conspiracy against them personally or their children. In these situations, most of these people spend little to no time with these children, helping them learn these games or practice in any sort of way. They are content to drop their kids off and leave the work to the coach. And sadly, most of these children will not continue to play, either due to lack of interest in the sport or because their own parents have made it so miserable.
As a coach’s wife, I know too well how hard decisions are to make for a team. I also know too well how much each decision is scrutinized by the parents. As a coach, there are times that hard decisions are made that are not going to be popular. But, the Coach’s responsibility is to his or her team, and he or she would not be doing their job if they let personal feelings outweigh the best interest of the team. The coach’s job on game day is to put the best team on the field. He should not fear for his personal safety after making these decisions.
Sadly, a situation got wildly out of control, and at the end of the day, a team consisting of 12 year old girls can’t even be happy that they just won at the Iowa Games. That will forever be an afterthought in this story, because all that anyone will remember is that Mother, Coach, and crew were brawling in the dirt.