What's worse, blowing a team out by 105 points, or patronizing that team by "letting up" so the margin of victory doesn't become too bloated?
That's the question plaguing the Christian Heritage High School girls basketball team in Riverdale, Utah. In a game last week, Christian Heritage demolished their counterparts from West Ridge Academy. The final score was enough to make many gasp, but the score doesn't tell the whole story. And, surprisingly in this era, those who one would expect to be offended, aren't.
Christian Heritage, nicknamed the Crusaders, head coach Rob McGill said he "absolutely" regrets that the blowout happened, but added it may be better than backing off and patronizing, or "taunting," the other team.
"I have been on the other side of this equation," McGill told KTVX. "It was very insulting when teams slowed the ball down and just passed it around. That's why I'd rather have a team play me straight up, and that's why I played them straight up. Because I didn't want to taunt them, I didn't want to embarrass them, I didn't want them to think we could do whatever we want."
And West Ridge accepts the explanation. "They've apologized, and we've moved on," Jamie Keefer, the school's athletic director, told KTVX. "We know they're good people and they should be proud of their team. There are no hard feelings at all."
According to the Salt Lake Tribune, it's an apology Keefer didn't ask for. And as for the game, the West Ridge players aren't embarrassed about their performance.
As Yahoo! Sports points out, this isn't the first time this has happened. Last year, the boys basketball team from Yates High School in Texas was criticized for a 170-35 blowout during its undefeated, national-title season. Yates coach Greg Wise has regularly been attacked for his tendency to push his team to score as many points as possible no matter what.
But McGill has deflected criticism because of the way the game was played and by explaining some extenuating circumstances. For starters, the Crusaders scored 28 points each quarter, except for the last one, when they scored 24. Consistent point scoring helps McGill's case. But also, as KTVX reports, McGill's team didn't employ a full court press, and couldn't pull their starters since they only had nine players total available for both the junior varsity and varsity games.
In the end, however, McGill says the incident is about teaching his players a lesson.
"Too many people in the world right now allow the youth to not be as good as they can be, allow them to be lazy," McGill told the TV station. "Here, I'm giving them an opportunity to live up to the best of their abilities and be proud of what they're able to accomplish. If that's what I'm being blamed for, then OK, I accept it."
(H/T: Yahoo! Sports)