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UTICA, N.Y. — A brawl between two District V American Legion teams has resulted in both teams being barred from postseason play in 2014, New York State American Legion Baseball Chairman Bruce Mayfield announced in a press release Wednesday.
The action stems from a fight between New Hartford Post 1376 and Whitestown Post 1113 that occurred during the July 26 district championship game at Murnane Field.
New York State American Legion Baseball also has placed both teams’ coaches on probation and suspended five players, and is recommending the teams do joint community service in the future.
The specifics of the ruling are as follows:
•Both teams will be ineligible for postseason district playoffs, and must play a complete league schedule or they will be suspended from playing in 2015.
•Coaches for both teams who were present at the July 26 game will be on probation for the 2014 season. Any violation of probation will result in suspension.
“A violation will consist of any of the following,” Mayfield said. “Ejection from a game; unsportsmanlike conduct that discredits the American Legion Baseball Program by the coach, player or team; forfeit of any league game during the 2014 season.”
•Two Whitestown Post players are suspended indefinitely due to “malicious unsportsmanlike conduct.”
•One Whitestown Post player is suspended for nine league games.
•One New Hartford Post player is suspended for six league games.
•One New Hartford Post player is suspended for three league games.
Mayfield said the punishment was due to the unsportsmanlike behavior the teams displayed during the brawl, which was “a discredit” to the American Legion, according to the release.
“Nationwide, we have taught hundreds of thousands of young Americans the importance of sportsmanship, good health and active citizenship,” Mayfield said in the release. “American Legion Baseball has been, and continues to be, a stepping stone to manhood for young men who have gone on to serve their country or community, raise families or even play the sport at the highest level.”