A Texas junior college pitcher who tackled an opponent after giving up a home run has been removed from the team, the school announced Thursday.
Owen Woodward, a student at Weatherford College, also received a four-game suspension from the North Texas Junior College Athletic Conference. The batter, Josh Phillips from North Central Texas College, was suspended two games for taunting.
Several other players were suspended after a brawl ensued, per the conference.
Devastation in Weatherford
The scene in the Longhorn State was playing out fairly normally at the start— Phillips smacked a two-run home run to give his squad a 3-2 lead in the top of the sixth inning and was routinely jogging the bases until the umpire started pointing at him halfway between second and third base. Woodward, who was upset but calm until the point, suddenly took off and violently leveled Phillips, who had only just turned his head and given himself a split second to brace for the impact.
Phillips’ North Texas teammates piled onto Woodward as coaches and the on-field crew attempted to separate the scrum. As a result, they were hit the hardest by the conference’s disciplinary actions.
“All team members for NCTC that were in the dugout or bullpen” and any assistant coach that stepped onto the field were suspended, along with four Weatherford players and assistant coaches.
Weatherford officials shared that Woodward was reprimanded further but did not provide details as to what this meant exactly.
More on the events in Texas
Wednesday’s outing was the first in a four-game series between the two programs. Both teams forfeited game one, and North Central Texas had to forgo games two and three because it did not have enough active players to field a lineup.
“We are shocked and disappointed at what happened in our game today,” Weatherford coach Jeff Lightfoot said after Wednesday’s game. “We do not condone this type of behavior. We have worked hard to build a program with the highest of standards. We are completely embarrassed by this incident, and we apologize to North Central Texas College and the fans of WC baseball. This type of behavior cannot be tolerated.”
Game four between the two is scheduled for Saturday.
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