STOWE TOWNSHIP, Pa .– As children ages 5 and 6 played little league football at Sto Rox High School this weekend, two brawls broke out. One involved teenage girls and the other took place on the pitch between the coaches.
“I was pissed off. I was upset because it’s not the kind of thing we want to be part of our image. It’s not what we promote,” said Tonya Payne-Scott, President of the Western PA Youth Athletic Association.
Payne-Scott said the adults started to get excited about the calls made during the game. This sparked an argument that escalated. The effect on the children was lost in all of this.
“It’s not their fault. They are not the ones who are fighting and causing all the trouble, but it is as if the adults make these decisions and the people who hurt themselves the most are the children, ”she said.
Payne-Scott said all coaches involved in the field fight were immediately suspended for the remainder of the year. The organization hires more security and requires tickets to be purchased in advance in order to control who enters and leaves matches.
“We want to try to bridge the gap and make sure the kids aren’t on the streets,” Payne-Scott said.
Payne-Scott is the mother of Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd and knows what it takes to make it to the NFL. She said that’s why the group works so hard to provide a positive, uplifting and engaging environment for activities like soccer, basketball and cheerleading. She told Channel 11 that keeping Boyd in youth football has helped her son reach the level of professional football.
She said she wouldn’t let the actions of a few people stop their ultimate goal of reaching and connecting with children.
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