A girls’ basketball team in Massachusetts reportedly forfeited a game against another team with a transgender player following several injuries that may or may not have been from the player.
According to Item Live, the game occurred on February 8 between KIPP Academy and Collegiate Charter School of Lowell, with the latter forfeiting under a crushing score of 31-14 after just 16 minutes of play. Sources later confirmed that KIPP had on its roster a male player standing at more than 6 feet tall “with facial hair.” Per the report:
KIPP officials refused to confirm the player’s gender identification. If the player identifies as female, participation on the girls team would seem to be supported by the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association, the governing body for high school athletics in the Commonwealth.
The player has reportedly been on the roster from the start of the season.
Collegiate Charter School of Lowell Athletic Director Kyle Pelczar said in a statement that the team knew of the situation going into the game and did not simply forfeit due to the presence of an alleged male player. The two teams even shared a match this past December wherein KIPP defeated Collegiate Charter School 36-29.
“No, and Coach (Kevin Ortins) knew going into the game already because we had them at home the first game of the year, and nothing happened then, so he knew going into the game,” Pelczar said.
“So, he felt that his girls were getting injured, basically, all game,” Pelczar added. “He has a playoff game on Monday, so he didn’t want to have any more of his girls go down.”
KIPP Athletic Director Anthony Grimaldi declined to answer questions.
“KIPP does not wish to make a comment at this time as to why the other team forfeited the game. We are looking forward to our next game,” Grimaldi said.
Collegiate Charter School of Lowell later released a statement indicating that the coach forfeited the game after three girls were injured. Still, he did not indicate if the player in question caused the injuries.
Trans-identified male player for Kipp Academy in MA injured 3 girls before half time causing Lowell Collegiate Charter School to forfeit.
A man hitting a woman used to be called domestic abuse. Now it’s called brave.
Who watches this & actually thinks this is “compassionate,… pic.twitter.com/ZLlqYH6iAs
— Riley Gaines (@Riley_Gaines_) February 19, 2024
“The coach of the Collegiate Charter School of Lowell Girls’ Basketball Team decided to end a game at halftime after watching a third player injured in the game with KIPP Academy,” the statement said. “The bench was already depleted going into the game < with the 12-player roster having four players unable to play. When the coach saw three more girls go down in the first half, leaving him with five players, he made the call to end the game early.”
“The upcoming Charter School playoffs were looming, and he needed a healthy and robust bench in four days. Once the third was injured, the remaining five expressed concern to him about continuing to play. The players feared getting injured and not being able to compete in the playoffs,” it added.