Call it a softbrawl game.
A group of violently over-enthusiastic parents went from cheering to fisticuffs in a wild brawl caught on video at a softball tournament in Tennessee on Saturday, according to the Kingsport Times News.
The bleacher-clearing scrap, which took took place after a heated matchup in which the East Wilkes Cardinals bested the Blue Ridge Explosion, began when parents of the Explosion started haranguing the umpire over a call that they felt had cost their kids the game, the Times News reported. That just didn’t sit well with Cardinals parents, and some of them called out the Explosion parents, Todd McLemore, athletic program coordinator for Kingsport’s Parks and Recreation Department, told the Times News.
Things went downhill from there, with one parent pushing another down a slope, a frustrated McLemore said.
“And then all chaos broke out,” McLemore told the Times News.
The fight lasted a hair-raising handful of minutes, and appeared to mostly involve male softball fans, who took swings at one another as a group of women screamed at them to break it up, with at least one female onlooker hurling an object into the fray as others pulled the men apart, according to video of the fracas.
By the time Kingsport police arrived on the scene tempers had cooled, and none of the erstwhile enemies would cop to have taken part in the fray, nor rat out any of the pugilists, according to the Times News.
No one was injured in the fight and police did not make any arrests, but both teams were ejected from the tournament, the Times News reported.
USA Softball, which sponsored the tournament, had some harsh words for the parents involved in the brawl.
I’ve done this for 10 years and never once had a physical altercation. This was the first and hopefully the last,” Tina Gale, the organization’s regional director, told the newspaper. “We run a very clean organization, we run good tournaments, but unfortunately it happened on our dime and we don’t take things like this lightly. We would never condone that kind of conduct.”
[Photo: Bryan Sayers via the Kingsport Times News]