High school football game ends after 9 players suffer head injuries
Coach of École L'Odyssée’s Olympiens says team was forced to forfeit due to safety concerns
The coach of a Moncton high school football team said his team was forced to forfeit a game on Friday after several of his players suffered head injuries, resulting in at least four showing signs of concussion.
Marcel Metti, the coach of the École L'Odyssée Olympiens, said nine of his players suffered blows to the head during Friday's game in Moncton against Sackville's Tantramar Titans.
He said all players were taken to a hospital as a precaution. Four players showed serious symptoms of concussion, such as nausea and vomiting.
"We had to forfeit the game for players' safety and security," he told CBC News.
As of Sunday, he said those four players still had concussion symptoms.
How players became injured is unclear
Metti said he wouldn't comment on how the players became injured.
"I'm not going to get into that. It's part of the football game," he said.
However, he said he had some discussions about what took place with the referees and Titans' coaches on Friday.
The game was interrupted halfway through, with the Titans leading 35-0.
'They were outmatched,' says coach
Scott O'Neal, the coach of the Titans, said his team was playing football within the rules, and was not penalized for any wrongdoing.
He said if any players were injured, it was because their coaches failed to prepare them.
"They were outmatched, that's as simple as it was," he said. "That's how football is."
Concussions in youth should be taken seriously, expert says
The incident took place about a week after the District Scolaire Francophone Sud, of which École L'Odyssée is part, released its new concussion policy.
The policy stipulates that any player who has received a blow to the head during a game must not play again until they have a doctor's note confirming they have no concussion.
Normand Gionet, a professor emeritus of kinesiology at Université de Moncton, said concussions in youth should be taken very seriously because they can affect everything related to your thinking and the way you function.
He said some children have died after suffering multiple concussions.
Gionet said if a child suffers a head injury, they should be taken to the doctor, even if they're not showing symptoms right away because sometimes the effects can be delayed.
With files from Radio-Canada