​Univ. of New Mexico Punishes Women's Soccer Team, Coach Over Hazing


Another college sports team is facing a disciplinary action for a hazing incident that left multiple freshman student athletes in the hospital and led two students to withdraw from the school.

On August 17, campus police responded to a call from freshman player Danielle Scelsi that her teammate and twin sister Devin Scelsi was extremely intoxicated and appeared to have trouble breathing. Devin and two other students were rushed to a hospital. According to CBS Los Angeles:

University officials revealed the team made stops at several houses that night, alcohol was consumed and at some point, liquid soap or window cleaner was sprayed on the freshmen players.

University of New Mexico athletic director Paul Krebs announced a brief suspension of the team, causing them to miss their season opener (a $5000 fine) but no further games. Team coach Kit Vela took responsibility for her squad, though she denied knowledge of the hazing, and has been suspended for one week without pay. Krebs stated:

“We believe the disciplinary measures we have taken today send a clear message about the gravity of the incident, and that it is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.”

In a statement released to OC Weekly from a friend of the Scelsis on behalf of the family:

“We respectfully request privacy as our family tries to move on from this incident, and as our daughters attempt to identify the next steps for their collegiate educational and athletic careers. Our daughters were the victims in this case, and we would ask the university to honor our right to privacy. No person should be subjected to the type of abuse, humiliation and degradation that our daughters were forced to endure as they embarked on what should have been a momentous time in their lives. We urge the university to take swift action to end this reprehensible behavior and the culture of shameful hazing that we now know exists.”

Image via Getty.

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