It’s not surprising to hear trash-talk out on the basketball court. In fact, it’s not surprising to hear trash-talk in any arena. But, when trash-talk turns to racial intimidation, that’s a whole other ball game we’re playing.
Monsio Jlaka, one of three black basketball players from a Phillipsburg team, said he was one of the targets of racial slurs and comments during a 17-and-under, Community Basketball League game Friday.
He said he was getting so angry that he had to be taken out of the game.
“They just kept talking a lot, using the n-word,” Jlaka said.
The Phillipsburg Police Athletic League Enforcers and the Palmer Wildcats were going head to head in an intense b-ball game where racial intimidation started out on the court and continued to the parking lot after the game, according to a Phillipsburg coach and player.
“It just ticks me off that this had to happen at a kids’ basketball game. No kid should have to tolerate hearing those things – period. It was uncalled for,” said Todd Opitz, the Phillipsburg coach.
The Wildcats assistant coach, Scott Sanguinito said he didn’t hear anything.
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“I did not hear anything and no one brought anything to my attention – players, coaches, or referees,” said Sanguinito.