An assistant junior hockey coach and one of his players have been suspended for an entire year by USA Hockey after they were found to have direct racist taunts at an African American opponent.
As reported by the Buffalo News, a January 20 incident captured on YouTube showed Amherst 18-and-under youth hockey player Roshaun Brown-Hall being targeted by Cheektowaga 18-and-under assistant coach Chris Reinhardt and one of his unnamed players.
A second player was suspended by the Cheektowaga team but was not handed additional sanctions by USA Hockey.
While the player who received the additional suspension has already owned up to his part in the incident, and expressed regret, Reinhardt’s fellow coaches have come to his defense. Here’s more from the Buffalo News:
Ken Phillips, head coach of the Warriors, said USA Hockey’s suspension of his assistant coach was “so unfair it’s not even funny.” The assistant coach “tried to do what he could” during the game to stop the taunting, Phillips said.
Phillips, who was not in attendance at the Jan. 20 game, pointed to what he described as the difficulty in sometimes controlling what comes out of the mouths of 18- and 19-year-olds. Phillips called his assistant coach a dedicated member of his staff.
“He got the same suspension as the kid that did it and I don’t understand that,” Phillips said.
While not directly searching for additional recriminations against Reinhardt or any of his players, Brown-Hall’s father expressed relief that some discipline was finally meted out.
“I’m glad that something was done,” Darren Brown-Hall, Roshaun’s father, told the News. “What this does is for all the teams, it puts them on notice that this type of behavior, these types of actions will not be tolerated.”