A high school football coach has apologized after one of his players scored 16 goals against a winless team in a game, The Associated Press reported. Benzie Central coach Chris Batchelder sent a letter Sept. 30 to Kingsley High school officials saying he didn’t want to “humiliate your players or your program” and expressed regret for some of the remarks.
Kevin Hubbell scored all but one of Benzie Central’s 17 goals in their Sept. 29 game against Kingsley, breaking state and national records for most goals in a high school game, the AP reported. Hubbell is one of Michigan’s best players and Batchelder told local media he knows the athlete is capable of setting records against Kingsley’s struggling team.
However, Hubbell’s performance sparked an outcry from Kingsley’s parents and officials, with some saying his actions were unsportsmanlike.
“He was a player getting hot and I got lost in the opportunity the kid had in front of him,” Batchelder said.
For more Associated Press reporting, see below.
The backlash over Hubbell’s performance continued Monday night at a Kingsley board meeting. Members did not take a formal vote, but there was clear support for sending a letter to Benzie Central District, the superintendent said.
“He was launching them like a rocket,” said Heather Bartelmay, a Kingsley school board member whose son served as goalie for part of the game. “We went and hugged our boys. That’s what it took. Their hearts were bleeding.”
Superintendent Keith Smith, who will write the board’s letter, told The Associated Press it was a “cheap move”.
“They decided to do it, and they did it,” Smith said Tuesday. “It has no place in high school athletics…Moving forward after getting punched in the face is a great life lesson. But our football program is a nascent program. We only have a limited number of children.”
Kingsley is 0-16 and has scored just seven goals all season, according to match results posted online.
In hindsight, Benzie Central district manager said the game perhaps should have been stopped immediately when the Huskies were eight goals up instead of waiting until halftime and allowing more goals to come in. accumulate.
Amiee Erfourth said there have been lopsided scores in other Northwest Conference sports, sometimes with her school on the losing side.
“It highlighted a good learning opportunity,” said Erfourth, the superintendent. “We always strive for our students to be the best student-athletes on the field and in school. But we also want to have class and sportsmanship.”
Kingsley’s football mother, Shannon Schoech, has suggested the school should stop playing Benzie Central in any sport this year.
“As parents, we want to be able to tell our boys that not only did their parents and loved ones stand up for them, but their whole community did too,” Schoech told the school board.