The LHSAA accepted the self-imposed penalties Lake Area officials suggested regarding a fight that occurred Thursday night in the school’s football game against Edna Karr.
Sametta Brown, CEO of New Beginnings School Foundations, the charter network that is over Lake Area, spoke to The New Orleans Advocate on Tuesday night about the self-imposed sanctions.
“Our students displayed unacceptable behavior,” Brown said. “As educators, we try to make every moment a teachable moment. This behavior was not representative of the high standarsds that every New Beginnings Student must uphold. So we felt it was important to impose our own sanctions to teach our children the importantce of taking responsibility for their actions.”
Lake Area head coach Derrick Lewis has been suspended for the team’s upcoming game Friday against Riverdale.
Lewis will not be allowed access to the team nor the facility before, during or after the game. A coach, who must be a member of Lake Area’s faculty, will coach the team this week.
Brown said a meeting is scheduled for Wednesday morning to decide who that coach will be.
One player, Lake Area’s Carnell McDaniels, has been removed from the team for the rest of the season.
Another unnamed Lake Area player received a one-game suspension.
There were no penalties for Karr, the home team in the game played at Behrman Stadium.
“We moved past last week, and we’re focusing on Carver and preparing for that,” Karr coach Brice Brown said. “Any sanctions self-imposed by Lake Area are really between Lake Area and the administration.
“We’re just moving forward here at Karr. ... Anytime a school is self-imposing infractions shows the administration and school has been investigating the situation thoroughly, making the best decision for kids.”
The fight between players occurred on the Lake Area sideline with 3:27 remaining in the third quarter. Karr was leading the District 9-4A game 47-7.
A fight ensued and officials ended the game at that point.
Karr officials said after the game that McDaniels, a defensive end for Lake Area instigated the altercation, after Karr quarterback Aldon Clark rushed down the Lake Area sideline out of bounds. McDaniels had been ejected from moments earlier in the quarter.
Lake Area has also been placed on administrative probation for one year.
“That basically means we are watching them closely to make sure nothing else happens,” said Keith Alexander, assistant executive director of the LHSAA. “If something else happens, they’ll have to come before the executive committee of the LHSAA. I’ve seen a lot of things happen at that point. I’ve seen them suspend you for a period of time, maybe for a year. A lot of things can happen.”
The LHSAA is also requiring that Lake Area pays for additional security for its games.
Both teams will play their regularly scheduled games this week.
Lake Area plays Riverdale at 3:30 p.m. Friday at Pan-Am Stadium, and Karr plays Carver at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at Pan-American.
“We take this type of incident and their behavior very seriously,” Sametta Brown said. “And we take the job of educating them very seriously. We want to ensure that incidents like this don’t happen again.”