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June 27, 2022

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King’s Way Christian offers apology after a racial incident during a high school soccer match on Thursday night

"Monkey noises" can be heard in the crowd as Black player from Seton Catholic was taking a penalty kick

By , Columbian Assistant Sports Editor

King’s Way Christian Schools offered an apology after an incident Thursday at a high school soccer match in which one or more spectators could be heard making “monkey noises” at a Seton Catholic player, who is Black.

The incident occurred at King’s Way Christian High School while Seton Catholic player David Moore was attempting a penalty kick.

Seton Catholic athletic director Phil Kent said the incident was reported to the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association, which is investigating.

King’s Way Christian Schools superintendent Dr. Jason Tindol made a personal apology to Moore on behalf of the school, adding that officials at King’s Way and Seton have been in communication Friday about the incident.

“Although the investigation continues, we know an inappropriate racial action was directed toward Mr. David Moore,” Tindol said. “The school leadership is preparing an apology letter for David Moore. I want to apologize on behalf of the King’s Way community personally. King’s Way rejects racism and is actively pursuing opportunities to respond as Christ would respond in a similar situation.”

In the 62nd minute of the match, King’s Way Christian was called for a foul in the box, resulting in a penalty kick for Seton Catholic. As Moore is about shoot the penalty, one or more spectators begin making a monkey-like screeches in an apparent effort to distract Moore.

The incident was caught on video on King’s Way Christian’s YouTube channel, which was broadcasting the game.

After converting the penalty kick, Moore runs past his teammates and toward the grandstand, pointing up into the crowd. After turning around to point to the back of his jersey, Moore continued to point toward the stands until play resumed.

Moore is one of the top high school soccer players in the region, having signed to play college soccer at Liberty University.

A clip of the incident was posted on Seton Catholic’s soccer Facebook page with the message: “The incident last night was directed at one of our Black players is all too familiar. During our game against King’s Way, racist monkey noises (were) directed at our player from the opposing student section. See the video.

“Exactly half of our team are minorities. Seton soccer welcome(s) diversity and practice(s) inclusion. No hate will be tolerated in our program, not from our fans, coaches or players. We proudly represent a school who believe and live these values. Hate doesn’t belong in this beautiful game, does not belong in institutions of education and does not belong in this world.”

The match ended in a 2-2 draw and was decided in a penalty kick shootout, which Seton Catholic won 4-2. Moore converted one of the four penalty kicks for Seton. No further noises can be heard during Moore’s latter penalty kick attempt.

Tindol added that during a scheduled high school assembly on Friday, King’s Way school leadership “addressed the inappropriate behavior that occurred during the soccer match.”

“I acknowledge and understand the anger and emotion being expressed by the Seton community and others on behalf of David,” Tindol said. “David deserves to play the game he loves without mistreatment, intimidation, or fear from a few unruly, ignorant spectators.”

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