A junior college pitcher is no longer on the team after he brutally assaulted a rival player. The moment the pitcher savagely leveled an opponent was captured on an alarming video.
North Central Texas first baseman Josh Phillips jacked a home run off Weatherford College pitcher Owen Woodward in the top of the sixth inning of Wednesday's game. The two-run, go-ahead homer gave NCTC a 3-2 advantage. Just as the batter was rounding third base, Woodward became infuriated. The pitcher slammed his glove onto the field and sprinted towards Phillips.
Woodward – a 6-foot-3, 195-pound reliever – lowered his shoulder and fiercely leveled Phillips, as seen in video from TSRN Sports. The pitcher slammed into the freshman baserunner so fiercely that Phillips' helmet flew into the air and landed approximately 5 feet away in foul territory.
North Central Texas players stormed out of the dugout and into the field to defend their teammate at the ballpark in Weatherford – about 30 miles west of Fort Worth.
Several North Central Texas players were hit with two-game suspensions for leaving the dugout. Four additional Weatherford players and assistant coaches were also suspended for two games.
Phillips managed to touch home plate following the football-like hit and subsequent brouhaha.
Initially, Woodward was slapped with a four-game suspension by the Northern Texas Junior College Athletic Conference. However, Weatherford baseball coach and assistant athletic director Jeff Lightfoot declared on Thursday that Woodward was "no longer with the team." The coach did not specify if Woodward quit the team or if he was kicked off the squad.
Weatherford College also said Woodward, a sophomore, had received additional discipline, but would not release details. The college cited college policy and federal regulations protecting student privacy.
Weatherford College stated, "The WC student in question will face potential disciplinary action from the Office of Student Services up to and possibly including expulsion. The Weatherford College Police Department is also investigating the incident and has taken statements."
"We are shocked and disappointed at what happened in our game today," Lightfoot said in a statement on Wednesday. "We do not condone this type of behavior. We have worked hard to build a program with the highest of standards. We are completely embarrassed by this incident, and we apologize to North Central Texas College and the fans of WC baseball. This type of behavior cannot be tolerated."
Brent Wallace – chancellor of NCTC – said the nasty incident would "be used as a teaching moment for our student-athletes to help ensure these incidents do not occur in the future.”
"NCTC expects our student-athletes to exhibit the highest levels of sportsmanship both on and off the field," Wallace said. "We appreciate the integrity of the Weatherford Administration in communicating with NCTC."
(WARNING: Graphic content)
Weatherford college pitcher tackles opponent during baseball game, video shows www.youtube.com