BEDFORD (CBSDFW.COM) – A heated football rivalry turned into a hot-tempered brawl during a high school playoff football game Friday night.
It was a rematch of last year’s 3A semi-final game between Alvarado and Henderson.
“We knew it was going to be a heated ballgame,” said Jeff Dixon, Alvarado head coach and athletic director.
The teams exercised sportsmanship through most of the game and there were no personal foul penalties.
“Both sides are helping each other up, patting each other on the back,” Dixon said.
Alvarado was up 34 to 13 with a minute and a half left in the game.
“It’s the end of the ballgame, onside kick,” Dixon said. “They’re kicking toward their bench. And one of our kids recovered the ball and he’s on the ground. The opposing team is coming in and we jump in front to block. And the young man that was blocked or hit didn’t like it a whole lot and came up very violent.”
Video shows Henderson and Alvarado players who were part of the play quickly running to the altercation on the field. Henderson players on the nearby bench also jumped in.
A Henderson player pulled off his helmet and swung it at another player as a referee yelled at him to put his helmet back on. Other players shoved one another and a few threw punches.
“We didn’t probably respond the right way either and the young man who was pushed or shoved came up and did the same thing,” Dixon said.
Alvarado’s athletic director said he reviewed all the footage of the incident he could get his hands on Saturday and contacted the UIL and the officiating crew from Abilene that called the game.
“We’ve investigated. We’ve addressed it with our kids,” Dixon said.
Henderson ISD released a statement reading:
“Its unfortunate that the Alvarado/Henderson game ended on a negative note with two players (one from each school) being ejected following a fight on the field. Henderson ISD regards good sportsmanship as a high priority and will continue to work diligently to ensure that it remains a priority in all facets of school life in our district.”
Neither school district is allowed to reveal disciplinary actions involving students, but both say this is an unhappy ending they do not want to see again.
“We’re ready to put it behind us and not dwell on the negative because there are way too many good things taking place here in Alvarado,” Dixon said.