Players form the Atlee Little League squad in the Junior Little League World Series had just won their semi-finals game and were poised to go for the championship until a picture of six of the team members appeared on Snapchat – a popular social media app. The picture showed the team members posing for camera with their middle fingers prominently in view.
The picture was evidently a response to some trash talking during the game between the teams. This tournament is for the best-of-the-best 12 - 15 year old girls teams in the world. But obviously champions in any sport need to behave like champions on and off the field. So, in spite of the picture being removing by a coach, the league decided to disqualify the Atlee team – giving the win to the team they had beaten.
This was a harsh but appropriate lesson about sportsmanship – be a gracious winner and loser – as well as a lesson that social media is a platform that you better be respectful of when posting anything, especially a picture or content that might work against you.
So, while these girls may have lost the opportunity to go for a softball trophy, hopefully they gained something more valuable and more lasting – the truth that when you express yourself – on social media or not – you better be ready for a response. It truly is a lesson for us all and will make for a Better East Texas.
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