FITCHBURG, MASS. (WHDH) - A Fitchburg State University basketball player has been indefinitely suspended from the team and barred from the school’s campus after he violently attacked a Nichols College player during a game Tuesday night.
Trailing by a double-digit margin in the second half of the game at Parkinson Gymnasium, Fitchburg junior Kewan Platt could be seen knocking Nichols’ Nate Tenaglia to the ground with a vicious forearm shiver, just moments after he made a three-point shot.
Fitchburg State Director of Public Relations Matthew Bruun said in a statement that the university is disgusted by the display of violence and that Platt could face additional punishment.
“The Fitchburg State community is appalled by the conduct displayed during Tuesday night’s home basketball game. The player involved has been indefinitely suspended from the team and barred from campus, effective immediately,” he said. “His behavior is antithetical to our community values and good sportsmanship. Fitchburg State does not tolerate behavior that violates those standards. The incident is being reviewed at the student conduct level for consideration of further sanctions.”
Platt, a native of Jamaica Plain and a criminal justice major, has since been removed from Fitchburg’s official team roster. The Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference said Platt has been stripped of a player of the week award that he previously won.
Tenaglia was not injured and was able to finish the game.
“He just took a shot and got blindsided out of nowhere,” said Nichols College student Dalton Johnson.
“It’s an assault. He should know that. He’s a criminal justice major, as we all found out. He should know what assault looks like,” Nichols College junior Jack Champagne said of Platt.
Nichols College Athletics Director Chris Colvin said in a statement that he is proud of the way his student-athletes handled the situation.
“We are proud of the way our student-athletes handled the incident and that they did not allow it to escalate. This matter is in the hands of the authorities and the Fitchburg State administration. We trust that they will handle it appropriately,” he said.
Fitchburg went to lose the contest, 84-75.
An investigation is ongoing.
“He actually got away with that. He shouldn’t still be playing,” said Ronnie Joseph, a football player at Nichols College.
Friends say Tenaglia is taking the incident in stride.
“Nate wasn’t mad because he would’ve got right in his face,” said Derek Rousso. “I’m real proud of him.”
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