Schools investigate soccer game fight resulting in injuries
There was violence on a soccer field Wednesday night during a 2023 Boys Soccer State Championship Tournament game between two religious private schools in Miami-Dade County.
The regional final game was between students from Scheck Hillel Community School, a Jewish school in Ojus, and Archbishop Coleman Carroll High School, a Roman Catholic school in The Hammocks.
A witness video shows a group of the Catholic school students in light blue shorts surrounding a boy who was wearing the opponents’ darker uniform. Tila Levi, a Scheck Hillel parent, told Local 10 her children who attended the game told her there were insults — including painful antisemitic slurs.
“What my kids told me they said, ‘Hitler was right,’” Levi said.
The chaos ensued after Scheck Hillel lost the home game 2-1. Archbishop Coleman Carroll students knew they were moving forward to the Feb. 18 semifinals for a chance to win the state championship.
“Words matter,” Levi said. “It’s offensive and can lead to violence.”
Witnesses said there were adults who displayed their middle fingers. Levi said several students were injured, including one who suffered a concussion.
“I believe he was kicked in the face with cleats and it was next to his eye,” Levi said.
Administrators for both schools released a joint statement on Thursday afternoon acknowledging an ongoing investigation due to their “zero tolerance for any kind of aggressive language and behavior, antisemitism or hate of any kind.”
The schools also reported alerting the Florida High School Athletic Association and announced a plan to take “appropriate action” and “to build understanding between both schools” in accordance with their “mutual commitment to safety, respect, and forgiveness.”
Rev. Al Jackson, Jr., of the New Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church in Pinewood, is not involved with the schools, but after he saw the video Thursday, he said the incident was alarming and disturbing.
“If we just sweep this under the rug, and say, ‘Oh! These are just kids being kids,’ we risk the dangers of forgetting that kids very soon become adults,” Jackson said.
He said he was concerned about the effects of “divisive” politics in Florida, and referenced Gov. Ron DeSantis’s decision to restrict education on Black history, and he added that the video served as a reminder that “all of us are to treat each other, not just with tolerance, but also with respect, with mutual love and care for one another.”