High School Baseball Team Forfeits Rather Than Play Against Girl
A high school baseball team just forfeited a championship game to avoid playing against Mesa Preparatory Academy and their female second-baseman, 15-year-old Paige Sultzbach.
Since Mesa didn’t have a girl’s softball team, Paige decided to try out and join the boy’s baseball team, thus becoming the only female in an all-boys team. She has sat out twice during prior games against Our Lady of Sorrows out of respect for the school’s beliefs. However, she could not afford to sit idle in a championship game.
Our Lady of Sorrows is run by the Society of Saint Pius X, a group of conservatives that are unrecognized by the Catholic Church. The school has refused to comment, but issued a press release:
This decision is pursuant to school policy which rules out participation in co-ed sports.
This policy is consistent with the traditional approach to education. As a Catholic school we promote the ideal of forming and educating boys and girls separately during the adolescent years, especially in physical education.
Our school aims to instill in our boys a profound respect for women and girls. Teaching our boys to treat ladies with deference, we choose not to place them in an athletic competition where proper boundaries can only be respected with difficulty.
“The very idea that such stereotypes are so strong, they’d actually forfeit a game simply because a girl was on the field. That’s ridiculous,” Lisa Maatz, director of public policy at the American Association of University Women retorted. “Does she have cooties?”
Additionally, Nancy Hogshead-Makar, senior director for the Women’s Sports Foundation explained that the school is setting unrealistic expectations on these boys. “In real life, these boys are going to be competing against the girls for jobs, for positions in graduate programs or in trade schools,” Hogshead-Makar said. “In every other area of their life, they are going to be competing side by side.”
Despite the ridiculousness of it all, Paige, on the other hand is handling this situation with class. “I felt like any passionate athletic person would feel. I don’t want our very first high-school baseball team to win the championship on a forfeit.”
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