A Louisiana High School Athletic Association sportsmanship committee deliberated for nearly three hours on Tuesday before opting to suspend a total of 18 football players from Baker High and Parkview Baptist from playing in this week's games.

Nine players from Baker and seven from Parkview received one-game suspensions that must be served this week. One Baker player was suspended for the final two games of the regular season.

Each school was also fined $1,000, placed on disciplinary probation for one year and accessed the cost for holding the hearing that came as the result of the Oct. 14 altercation.

In addition, the committee recommended that the performance of the game officials be evaluated by an independent source.

The altercation that took place with 6:41 left in the third period led to the game being stopped by the officiating crew with defending Class 3A state champion PBS leading 22-0.

"It was real tough because the video (of the altercation) we received from both schools was not complete," LHSAA Executive Director Kenny Henderson said. "We never want a sportsmanship hearing. It's not that the fight takes place, it's how you handle it.

"We want out principals to take appropriate action without coming to a sportsmanship hearing. I feel like they (committee) did a good job of sort-ing things out."

LHSAA Assistant Executive Director Keith Alexander presided over the hearing that involved nearly three hours of testimony from school officials, including the principals ane head coaches, and the game officials.

Three member principals from the LHSAA's executive committee, James Gray, of Westgate-New Iberia, David Federico, of Ecole Classique, and Church Point's Lee Bellard were also part of the committee that made the ruling.

"I'm disappointed about the events that took place and the sanctions that were imposed upon us, but I do understand them," Baker Principal Traci Morgan said. "I'm glad this is over so we can move forward and do exactly what the association has asked us to do, which is a take a very proactive approach to make sure this doesn't happen again."

PBS Principal Melanie Ezell added, "It's a group of our peers that we agreed to let determine what would happen. As in most of these things, much of it will be helpful and we'll move on from here."