Officials shaken after prolonged tirade from hockey coaches

Lack of respect for officials was at a recent Kerry Park minor hockey game. - file photo illustration
Lack of respect for officials was at a recent Kerry Park minor hockey game.
— image credit: file photo illustration

The actions of Juan de Fuca peewee hockey team coaches are under scrutiny following a playoff game at Kerry Park Arena.

Rob Webb, who happens to be the Shawnigan Lake RCMP Sgt. but was there in a civilian capacity as a game supervisor, filed a lengthy report with Sharon Cairns of the Vancouver Island Hockey Association regarding the conduct of the Juan de Fuca coaches.

“Throughout the game in which Kerry Park led all the way through, the Juan de Fuca coach who appeared to be the head coach showed his displeasure at calls or non-calls by throwing his arms up and swatting his palms forward as if to say ‘go away or come on,’’’ wrote Webb.

“The refs throughout approached Juan de Fuca’s bench on more than one occasion and spoke directly with one of the coaches who runs one of the doors. Early in the game, the officials spoke with (the head coach) and on more than one occasion he had his right hand with his digit finger pointing in the ref’s face.’’

Craig Shaw was there as an assistant coach with the Victoria Racquet Club Novice Blue team waiting to play the next game.

“What I saw was two of the coaches from the Juan de Fuca team — one in particular who was ejected and then another took over — swearing profusely at the ref or refs,’’ he pointed out.

“There were some teenagers in the crowd. I saw the coach gesture in an aggressive manner to the teenagers to see him in the hallway. A Kerry Park coach started yelling at the Juan de Fuca coach as well. From this point, I was concentrating on shielding our seven- and eight-year-olds from the incident.’’

Webb pointed out there were some upset players and coaches after Kerry Park scored the winning goal on a four-on-three power play in overtime and the refs and linesmen did their best to separate the teams.

“The head coach continued to yell at the officials immediately after,’’ Webb reported. “He then went with his players and shook hands. He then remained on the ice and continued to yell at the two officials while the two 14-year-old linesmen remained between him and the refs. He had his right hand up pointing as well at the refs.’’

Webb saw the coach get closer to the officials as they slowly backed up. He was prepared to go on the ice at that point when the coach finally went off.

“I felt that (since) his anger was directed at the two officials, the Kerry Park coaches and players remained on the ice and his players were off that nothing further would occur,’’ Webb added.

“I then observed a commotion on the stairs as (the coach) exited the ice surface and hurried over. I arrived 20 seconds later and cooler heads had prevailed.’’

Webb pointed out he remained outside the officials’ door to ensure they were brought in safely. The two young linesmen were visibly shaken, he observed, but he commended them for their mature handling of the situation.

“The prolonged actions of (the coach) were a disgrace and an embarrassment to hockey at any level,’’ Webb concluded.

It is not clear, what, if any further action can or will be taken. The Vancouver Island Hockey Association had not responded to NLP inquiries by press time.

Just last week a hockey father in Winnipeg was banned from arenas for the remainder of the season for a verbal tirade and threats against another parent whose son was injured after a hard check. The whole incident was caught on tape and posted on YouTube.

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