High School Football

After Squalicum-Rainier Beach brawl, officials working to determine who did what

A brawl between Squalicum and Rainier Beach spills onto the Rainier Beach sideline as a Squalicum player is shoved from behind into a Rainier Beach student on Friday, Nov. 4, 2016, at Civic Stadium in Bellingham. Officials have yet to determine which players could be ejected because of the fight.
A brawl between Squalicum and Rainier Beach spills onto the Rainier Beach sideline as a Squalicum player is shoved from behind into a Rainier Beach student on Friday, Nov. 4, 2016, at Civic Stadium in Bellingham. Officials have yet to determine which players could be ejected because of the fight. eabell@bhamherald.com

It’s too early to tell what sanctions could come for football players from Squalicum and Rainier Beach high schools following a brawl at Friday night’s game.

The fight broke out with 4:15 left in the Class 3A quad-district playoff game at Civic Stadium. Rainier Beach forfeited its Class 3A quad-district playoff game against Squalicum with the Storm up 35-7.

Larry LaBree, assigner for the Whatcom Skagit Island Football Officials Association, said officials had yet to file a game report, the first step to determining who would face discipline. From there, LaBree would have a chance to review the report to ensure its accuracy before sending it to the Washington Officials Association.

“In the case of a situation like this, the state’s going to be pretty heavy-handed to find out what’s going on,” LaBree said. “Obviously, this is the type of thing nobody wants to see.”

LaBree added that, from his vantage point in the press box, he didn’t see any players from Squalicum leave the bench once the fight broke out, but all of Rainier Beach’s players – about 50 – were on the field.

Both teams’ coaches, he added, worked to keep things from escalating.

“It wasn’t all black and white, so to speak, but there were people trying to make the situation better as best they could from both sides,” he said.

While Rainier Beach’s season ended, Squalicum moves on to the Class 3A state playoffs and will host either Mercer Island or Bonney Lake – who were scheduled to play for the District 3 No. 4 seed to state at 2 p.m. Saturday – at Civic Stadium on Friday or Saturday in the first round.

Kyle Mittan: 360-756-2803, @KyleMittan

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