MCKEESPORT, Pa. - An entire student section was kicked out of a football game at McKeesport Area High School for repeatedly shouting taunts and obscenities after being told to stop, according to school officials.
Channel 11 News exchange partner Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported that the Gateway students were wearing surgical masks and white doctor’s outfits Friday night, and shouting “Diseaseport” at their rivals, according to McKeesport Superintendent Mark Holtzman Jr.
Holtzman said the Gateway cheerleaders also wore masks.
According to The Trib, Holtzman said the more than 100 students repeatedly chanted profanities at the McKeesport team and fans. He asked them to stop, and when they did not, he said he sent administrators and police officers to keep and eye on the section.
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The chants continued, so Holtzman told The Trib he made the decision to have the students escorted out of the stands.
“Unfortunately, last night their student section came with limited supervision, and they were quite belligerent even coming into the game,” he said. “I didn’t want the issue to become a big issue that I couldn’t control.”
However, Gateway athletic director Chuck Reilly told The Trib his students’ behavior was not as bad as home officials described.
According to The Trib, Reilly said he was standing in front of the student section and, while there was some swearing and raucous behavior, it was not to the extreme level described by McKeesport.
“I can unequivocally say it was not the whole section, because I would have heard it,” he said.
Reilly told The Trib he accepted McKeesport’s decision, but he did not think it was warranted by his students’ behavior.
“I said it’s fine, it’s their stadium, if this is what they want to do, this is what they want to do,” Reilly said.
However, Reilly said McKeesport students weren’t innocent either. He claims McKeesport students were hurling insults and homophobic slurs at Gateway players.
Gateway ended up beating McKeesport 36-7.
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