Volleyball Seasons Canceled Following Brawl

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The Buffalo News (New York)


The girls' volleyball seasons for Emerson and South Park have been canceled following an ugly brawl in which five teens were arrested after an Oct. 13 match at South Park.

According to police, multiple students were injured when a majority of the Emerson team was assaulted by South Park students outside the gym. A portion of the fight was captured on school security cameras.

Police said they arrested five of the seven participants in the brawl that could be identified.

It is unclear what led to the fight.

School district spokeswoman Elena Cala confirmed that the five teens — all athletes believed to attend South Park — have been suspended under the district's code of conduct. Cala said two Emerson players were injured during the incident.

"The District Code of Conduct holds high expectations for the proper and peaceful behavior of all students," Cala said. "The District is unable to comment on individuals involved due to the police investigation and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act."

According to police, one of the teens was taunting a female student by following her and repeatedly yelling, "You wanna fight?" She then followed the student outside the gym when she was leaving with her mother and sister.

The situation escalated, leading to the teen punching, kicking and throwing the other girl to the ground. That led to the other teens joining the fray, police said.

According to police, the 16-year-old who was attacked suffered bruising, swelling and was later determined to have a concussion. Her sister, 14, also received medical attention for bruises to the head.

A 16-year-old girl was charged with second-degree gang assault, second-degree harassment, child endangerment and inciting to riot. A 17-year-old girl was charged with second-degree gang assault and endangering the welfare of a child. A 17-year-old girl was charged with second-degree gang assault, inciting to riot and child endangerment. A 16-year-old boy was charged with gang assault in the second degree and endangering the welfare of a child. Raymond Mushat, 18, was charged with second-degree gang assault, inciting to riot and child endangerment.

Cala said district staff "will review policy and procedures with coaches, school administration, security, and student support in order to prevent similar incidents."

Neither volleyball team experienced much success on the court this season. South Park had one win entering the match against winless Emerson.

The Section VI Tournament begins next week with seeds expected to be unveiled Monday night. The tournament begins Tuesday.

It's uncertain whether the teams would have participated or opted out of the playoffs given their on-court struggles. South Park is a Class A-sized school, while Emerson is Class B-1.

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October 21, 2017


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