By Victoria Cazares
When one thinks of the word “sportsmanship”, one generally thinks of playing fairly and losing with grace and winning with dignity. However, that’s not exactly what happened during and after Pueblo’s homecoming game on Friday, Oct. 1.
Pueblo hosted Arcadia High School from Phoenix, Ariz., and although our guests were a heavy favorite, the Warriors barely missed the opportunity for a victory in the last seconds of the game. In the end, the Bulldogs clenched the win with a score of 12-7.
One might think that our victors would show some grace for their win—especially on another team’s field in another city.
According to our varsity players and our coaches, members on the opposing team showed disgraceful and unfortunate disrespect as well as blatantly unsportsmanlike behavior during and after the game.
“Name-calling and negative comments were already posted by Arcadia High School [on social media] days before the game was played, saying they were going to beat us 49-0,” said Miguel Moreira, a junior. “Despite our loss, we definitely made Arcadia earn that win. However, their name-calling during the game was uncalled for.”
Our Warrior football players heard a series of classless names from opposing team members, referring to Pueblo’s players as “South Side trash,” “a team of thugs,” and “beaners.” A few players said that they heard Arcadia football players wishing that our school would have a “boring homecoming.”
“What Arcadia did was very was disrespectful and immature,” said senior Daidryan Mendivil. “Their behavior was uncalled for. Why couldn’t they just enjoy their win and acknowledge that it was a well-played game for both teams?”
“We felt really disrespected,” said quarterback Diego Ramirez, a junior. “The bad sportsmanship after the game got out of hand, and there was no need for all of that.”
According to observers, Arcadia’s coaches failed to control their team or to show true leadership—as they, too, were part of the unsportsmanlike behavior.
“I was really shocked that [Arcadia] coaches were laughing at their players mocking us,” said senior George Molina, who is an “unofficial” manager of the team and a formidable mentor to many of the Pueblo’s football players. “I thought that coaches were supposed to be positive role models for their team members.”
Pueblo’s head coach, Mr. Jake Allen, was glad the tensions did not escalate to the point where things got physical.
“Things got a little out of hands, for sure,” said Allen. “The way Arcadia behaved created a pretty intense and uncomfortable environment for us, but we managed to keep our cool.”
Pueblo’s cheerleaders were also verbally harassed by some of Arcadia’s players, as many of the cheerleaders had to endure “unpleasant” comments.
One of those cheerleaders, junior Karolina Carrillo, said, “At the end of game, I heard some of the Arcadia players calling us ‘sluts’, and they kept bothering us. I had to ask [security monitor Ms.] Nellie [Rivera] to walk with me so that I felt safer.”
Pueblo High School Principal Mr. Frank Rosthenhausler said, “Everything begins with leadership, and it’s clear that the Arcadia High School coaches failed to show this to their players.”
He paused and said, “I’m proud of our football team and how they handled themselve