RI football all-star game cut short by brawl
CRANSTON, R.I. —
A brawl between dozens of players at an all-star football game Saturday in Cranston forced officials to end the contest early.
The Rhode Island Football Coaches Association East-West Senior Game ended with 5 minutes left in the fourth quarter.
"I'm not very happy about it because it doesn't look good for the Rhode Island Coaches Association. I am very disappointed something like that takes place. I think the coaches should be able to control that," said Steve Stoehr, a former president of the RIFCA.
Randolph Zleh, who recently graduated from Mount Pleasant High School, was participating in the game for the West team.
Zleh told NBC 10 he was running with the ball and trying to run past defenders and was forced out of bounds.
"I was trying to run past them with my speed and when I got out of bounds I tried to stop. And next thing I know, I was in the air," Zleh said.
Once Zleh was pushed, his teammates jumped on the pile inciting the brawl.
"I'm glad the referees cut the game short because if it had kept going, it would have been worse," he said.
No injuries were reported.
Zleh said both teams left the field without shaking hands because he expected another fight. He said he saw people in the stands coming down toward the field.
"They started standing by the fence. I guess some of them wanted to jump over the fence and try to come in the fight, but they broke up the fight quick enough before that could happen," Zleh said.
Capt. Gerard Carnevale of the Cranston Police Department told NBC 10 that nobody contacted police about the game.
"I have concerns about the fact that we weren't told there was going to be a football game there, and that we weren't told there was a fight there," Carnevale said. "We're going to look into it. I'm going to look into why we weren't told about it."
The game was not sanctioned by the Rhode Island Interscholastic League.