MIDDLETOWN >> Pomperaug High School officials presented two formal letters of apology to Middletown Public School officials for the conduct of their students at last Friday’s Class L quarterfinal boys basketball game in Middletown.
The meeting took place Wednesday morning in Middletown.
At the game, Pomperaug High students participated in organized chants of “SAT scores, SAT scores” at the Middletown team and fans, and also chanted, “KFC, KFC” in what is widely regarded as a racially-motivated chant.
Pomperaug students also booed Middletown High players when they first came on the court and also interrupted Director of Athletics Elisha De Jesus during her pregame sportsmanship announcement, causing her to stop and admonish the students from Pomperaug to be quiet.
The letter from Principal Glenn Lungarini said, in part, “The Pomperaug student section acted in a manner that was inappropriate by engaging in a chant of ‘SAT scores’ and booing the Middletown players as they entered the floor for pre-game warm-ups. These displays of behavior are unacceptable and not in line with Pomperaug High School’s high standards and expectations of student behavior and sportsmanship.”
The letter further stated, “…we take responsibility for our actions that were in direct contradiction to the values and ethics we teach our students at Pomperaug High School. The Pomperaug administration and staff have addressed the unacceptable behavior of our students at the Middletown game and will strive to prevent any similar inappropriate behaviors in the future.”
Lungarini closed the letter by saying, “On behalf of Pomperaug High School I offer my sincere apology to the Middletown High Boys Basketball team, its fans and school administration. We wish your team the best of luck for the remainder of the CIAC tournament and in the future.”
A second letter was not signed, but instead carried the “signature” of Pomperaug’s Student Council President (on behalf of the Pomperaug High School student body).
It said, “Our actions on Friday night at Boys Basketball Class L Quarterfinals were not in good character or judgment. On a continual basis our administrators and teachers engage us in activities that promote responsible decision making and acceptance. Upon reflection on the actions and comments made by our student section at last Friday’s game, we did not uphold the standard and expectation of behavior instilled in us at Pomperaug High School.
“On behalf of the Pomperaug High School student body we apologize to the Middletown Boys Basketball team and their fans. We sincerely hope this issue can be resolved and such verbal actions will never happen again from any Pomperaug High School student.”
Middletown will play East Catholic for the Class L state championship Saturday night at 8:15 p.m. at the Mohegan Sun Arena.