IMANI CHRISTIAN ACADEMY SAINTS, preparing for their contest against Jeannette, Sept. 23 at Graham Field in Wilkinsburg. (Photos courtesy Imani Christian Academy)

Sheldon Williams recently wrote the song, “Born Guilty” by Frisson. Both Pittsburghers, the song, just released via YouTube on Oct. 1, drives home a message of how one would feel if they were pulled over by police, “just because.” Then, when one’s kids ask why, one would respond: “This is how it is.”

This is how some parents of Imani Christian Academy football players felt on Sept. 23, after officials stopped the game against the Jeannette Jayhawks with 4:30 left in the fourth quarter. The Jayhawks were leading, 54-36. Officials decided to discontinue the game, ejected a fan, and the police were called. A few days later, on Wednesday, Sept. 27, a closed-door hearing occurred between officials, team head coaches and the WPIAL.

SAM FAIRLEY

“I was most disheartened by the way in which the referees misrepresented the facts and how the media continued to recklessly repeat it,” said Dr. Rahmon Hart, an Imani Christian Academy parent, father of Rahmon Hart Jr. (No. 11). “No fans ever ran on to the field as reported and the players never laid a finger on each other. This should never have been referred to as a fight or a scuffle. The referees should have never called the police.”

Most media reports in the days after the alleged incidents stated that officials noticed an Imani Christian fan throwing a plastic bottle at the opposition’s bench. Officials did not feel as though the venue was properly secured, and three officials testified that the conditions were probable for on- and off-field scuffles. Over 20 penalties were called on Imani, to 13 for Jeannette. Five Imani Christian players were ejected from the game.

Imani Christian plays their home games at Wilkinsburg’s Graham Field.

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