‘Boys do not belong in girls’ sports’: Teammate of HS field hockey player hospitalized by male opponent calls for changes

News & Politics

A teammate of the Massachusetts high school field hockey player who was
hospitalized last week after a male opponent fired a high-powered shot into her face said it’s time for changes to rules that allow males to play on female teams, WFTX-TV reported.

Dighton-Rehoboth team captain Kelsey Bain wrote in a letter to the state’s lnterscholastic Athletic Association that “boys do not belong in girls’ sports,” the station said.

What is the background?

During Thursday’s playoff game against Swampscott High School, the male Swampscott player fired a shot toward the goal, but the ball instead hit a Dighton-Rehoboth player hard in her face. The ball ricocheted far from the point of impact, and the injured player fell to her knees and cried out — as did her teammates. A number of them turned their faces away after coming to her aid, and play was halted while the injured female player was treated.

“The shrieks and screams of fear and pain that projected from her after being hit filled the stadium,” Bain added in her letter, according to WFTX. “The looks of horror and shock on the faces of the girls surrounding her were also chilling.”

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Massachusetts scholastic rules allow males to play sports with females if there’s no male team for that sport available — and vice versa.

But Bain said enough is enough.

“We all witnessed the substantial damage that a male has the ability to cause against a female during a game,” she added in her letter, according to the station. “How much longer does the MIAA plan on using girls as statistical data points before they realize that boys do not belong in girls’ sports?”

What does the MIAA have to say?

The MIAA told WFTX it stands by the Equal Rights Amendment: “We respect and understand the complexity and concerns that exist regarding student safety. However, student safety has not been a successful defense to excluding students of one gender from participating on teams of the opposite gender.”

Anything else?

When play resumed following the injury to the Dighton-Rehoboth player, the male Swampscott player quickly scored a goal. In fact, he scored both goals for Swampscott, giving his team a 2-0 victory and eliminating Dighton-Rehoboth from the tournament.

It won’t come as a shock that the male Swampscott player is reportedly a Northeastern Conference All-Star. He’s also a four-year varsity player and team co-captain, WCVB-TV reported, citing Swampscott Public Schools Athletic Director Kelly Wolff.

Dighton-Rehoboth Superintendent Bill Runey said the injured female player was released from the hospital Friday but suffered “significant facial and dental injuries,” the Sun Chronicle reported.

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