Georgia girls lacrosse team said fans shouted the N-word to them during the playoffs

CANTON, GA. (CBS46) – Members of the Brookwood Girls Lacrosse team said fans shouted racial slander at them during a game Wednesday at Cherokee High School.

“Heckling became more aggressive, more direct, more racially motivated,” said Aja Thomas, goalkeeper for the Brookwood girls’ lacrosse team.

Thomas said a group of seven or eight boys had yelled at her throughout the game.

Ten minutes into the second quarter, she said she heard the first n-word shouted by her. Then another.

‘And then it was said again and it confirmed everything. And that was when I informed the judges, ”Thomas said in an interview with CBS46 News on Thursday.

Georgia lacrosse team said fans shouted the N-word to them during the playoffs.
Georgia lacrosse team said fans shouted the N-word to them during the playoffs.(Provided by Aja Thomas)

Brookwood High School played Cherokee High School in Canton in the first round of the GHSA Class 6A-7A Girls State Lacrosse Championship.

Four players from the Brookwood team spoke to CBS46 News on Thursday, a day after the playoffs.

“At that moment, it rose to something far deeper than just lacrosse,” Leah Brown said.

The girls said a judge has already warned the group of boys of potential violations of the sports spirit agreement.

Part of the GHSA Sportsmanship Agreement reads:

Slogans, derogatory remarks and intimidating actions directed at officials, competitors or other spectators will not be tolerated and are grounds for being removed from the scene.

The girls said a judge asked the boys to leave the event.

“They started leaving the stadium,” said Alexis Scoggins.

Scoggins said the group inevitably stayed.

“As a black athlete who played in that game, it just feels to me like they won in that situation because they were not thrown into that fight at that moment,” said Dami Kasumu, a Brookwood lacrosse player.

The principal of Cherokee High School said they investigated the allegations in a statement on Facebook.

“The administration at CHS spent several hours interviewing coaches, players, other spectators and students present at the match, and no one heard any racist incantations,” wrote Rodney Larrotta, principal at CHS.

CBS46 News reached out to the school district, but a spokesman said they stand by the principal’s statement.

“If there is evidence to support such allegations, we will treat it properly. At CHS, we will not tolerate the use of racial slander by anyone on our campus,” Larrotta wrote.

CBS46 News contacted GHSA but did not receive a response.

The Brookwood players said they would like an apology from Cherokee High School.

Georgia lacrosse team said fans shouted the N-word to them during the playoffs
Georgia lacrosse team said fans shouted the N-word to them during the playoffs(Provided by Aja Thomas)

They also said that not feeling heard only hampers progress in breaking into a predominantly white sport.

“The fact that I can not play a high school game without the constant reminders that I am different, after me – I felt really desperate,” said Thomas.

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