High School Ref Won't Work Game After Anthem Protest
Coach blasts the ref for yelling at players
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 29, 2017 8:00 AM CDT
   (Ronald W. Erdrich/The Abilene Reporter-News via AP)

(Newser) – A high school football coach is criticizing a referee who refused to officiate a game after members of the opposing team knelt during the national anthem, the AP reports. Referees Ernie Lunardelli and his son, Anthony, say they told officials from Colts Neck and Monroe high schools before Friday night's game they would walk off the field if any players protested. They say they respect players' right to protest but believe such acts are disrespectful.

Colts Neck Coach Darian Barnes told NJ.com that Ernie Lunardelli yelled at Monroe players after some knelt, accusations Lunardelli denies. Barnes agrees referees and players should be able to express their views but says Lunardelli was "a coward" to yell at the teenage players. Some NFL players have been kneeling to protest social injustices, particularly against African-Americans.


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