Player names are not being used to protect the identity of minors.
UNIONTOWN, Pa. — A Hampshire running back was assaulted violently on the field by 2 players from Albert Gallatin High midway through the 4th quarter of Friday’s football game.
The defenseless Trojan, a freshman, was left with a litany of injuries including a concussion, hearing loss in his left ear, and facial bruising and swelling, a family member confirmed.
The Gallatin coaching staff said players involved would be expelled from the team and that criminal proceedings would be initiated. They said possible further action could include suspension from school.
Later this week police will be taking statements at Hampshire High as part of the investigation.
“The investigation is still open and active,” said Hampshire Athletic Director Trey Stewart.
The attack occurred with just over 4 minutes left on the clock, as a Trojan running back took a handoff to the right side of the line of scrimmage and was brought down by a host of Colonial defenders. His helmet came off as the play ended.
Video shot from the visitors’ sideline shows 2 Albert Gallatin players physically assault the Hampshire player, the 2nd jumping in and head-butting the running back repeatedly with his helmet after a Trojan pulled the 1st attacker off.
The attack ended the game.
School personnel on both sides expressed dismay over the attack.
“We are extremely disappointed this situation occurred,” said Albert Gallatin Athletic Director Duane DuPont.
The school had not issued an apology or reached out to the player’s family as of Tuesday afternoon.
Stewart said his initial reaction was confusion of what was happening and why.
“It was disappointing to hear that a student athlete would attack a defenseless player like that,” he said.
Trojan Head Coach Aaron Rule praised his players for staying on the sideline as events unfolded. Coming onto the field would have cost players a 1-game suspension under WVSSAC rules.
“I was proud of our sideline,” Rule said.
Stewart said no decision has been made on whether the 2 teams will play again next year.
“I think that we are too early in this process to make that decision at this time,” he said. “There are many factors that come into play while scheduling varsity football games.”