May 11th, 2012
07:49 AM ET

Baseball final forfeited because of girl at second base

The Arizona Charter Athletic Association state championship baseball game wasn't played Thursday night because Mesa Prep's second baseman is a girl.

Paige Sultzbach, a freshman, is playing baseball because her high school doesn't offer girls softball. But the school Mesa Prep was to face in the final, Our Lady of Sorrows Academy, said its boys would not compete against a team with a girl and forfeited the game - and the state title - to Mesa Prep.

"As a Catholic school, we promote the ideal of forming and educating boys and girls separately during the adolescent years, especially in physical education,” Our Lady of Sorrows said in a statement, according to CNN affiliate KTVK.

“It takes tremendous moral courage to stand by what it is you believe, and they are doing what they think is right,” Mesa Prep Headmaster Robert Wagner told KTVK.

But Sultzbach's mother, Pamela Sultzbach, said her daughter and the Mesa Prep team were being done a disservice.

"This is not a contact sport. It shouldn't be an issue. It wasn't that they were afraid they were going to hurt or injure her, it's that (they believe) that a girl's place is not on a field," Pamela Sultzbach told the Arizona Republic.

"I respect their views, but it's a bit out of the 18th century," Amy Arnold, Mesa Prep's athletic director, told the Republic.

Mesa Prep and Our Lady of Sorrows played twice during the regular season, but Sultzbach sat out, as they were away games for her team.

“It was on their field, and I felt the need to respect their rules,” she told KTVK.

The final would have been on a neutral field, and Sultzbach wanted to play.

Now, despite being hailed as state champions, Mesa Prep will feel like they've missed something, Pamela Sultzbach said.

"This team has worked so hard," she said. "They're undefeated. They had one game left. At our school, we're taught that when you start something, you complete it, and they weren't done."

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Filed under: Arizona • Baseball • Sports
soundoff (1,403 Responses)
  1. sbstr

    The time to object would have at the beginning of the season and make sure that there are no girls in a boys league. It is just poor form to throw a tantrum for the finals. Catholic school is wrong on two counts here.

    May 11, 2012 at 10:09 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. sham13ert

    Moses pulled a fortune out of a cookie, which said, "You play ball like a girl." Upon reading this fortune he declared, "Girls shall not be permitted to play on the same diamond as boys, lest thee desires the smiting of our lord."

    May 11, 2012 at 10:09 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • StupiditySlam

      First bristol palin [yes, lower case little mini-mes] lecturing Obama on parenting, now this.
      Lololol.
      Way to go, Paige, they were scared of you. You are the intimidator. The boys' team's faith must have been smallish.

      May 11, 2012 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
  3. Hap

    If this young lady is qualified to play on that field so be it. Who are they to impose their will on the rest of us? If they don't want to comply with our rules that's fine, don't play in our leagues. What a dissappointment this must have been to the kids involved on both sides. The damage caused by their action could have been prevented if they would have removed themselves from the league knowing it allowed girls to play, or the league should have kicked them out. No, they chose to impose their will on the rest of us, the league choose to ignor the situation and now there's a bucnh of kids who were cheated out of playing in a championship, something many will never get the chance to do again.. I'd bet if you asked the kids they'd would have played the game. They need to form their own league of like minded people and leave freedom loving people to enjoy our wonderful country built, in part, on freedom from their rules!

    May 11, 2012 at 10:10 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • MarkinFL

      You are very right. They should not be allowed to play in the league if they cannot follow the rules.

      May 11, 2012 at 10:15 am | Report abuse |
  4. Fernando

    Everyone saying they didn't want to lose to a girl knows the 2 games they lost, she sat out right?

    Why do parents always set their children up like this? It's not 18th century, it's boys baseball and girls softball! As others have stated boys aren't allowed to join girl teams so why do yall get upset about boys not wanting to play against a girl. In fact, someone tell me a factual example of where a womans team has beaten a male team either high school, college or pro......wait, you can't! BECAUSE THEY DON'T COMPETE AGAINST ONE ANOTHER!

    Why is it so hard

    May 11, 2012 at 10:11 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Steve

      There was no girl's team. If separate teams are not provided, then the one that is should be for both boys and girls.

      May 11, 2012 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
    • DMC

      With no girls' team, she had no other options. People need to stop being idiots.

      May 11, 2012 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
  5. tony

    Cognitive dissonance. Believing something that flies in the face of all reason. Happens in Politics and religion all the time. Education is supposed to be the cure , but these CD's like to get in and screw up childrens' education so they can get more recruits. Pretty soon it will the ONLY way they can get recruits – AKA" Grooming".

    May 11, 2012 at 10:11 am | Report abuse | Reply
  6. ggreen7

    The Catholic school want boys to play with only boys so that when they become adults they will join the priesthood and continue the same practice.

    May 11, 2012 at 10:12 am | Report abuse | Reply
  7. HollyW

    Hmmm...a "religious belief". Is this truly a universal Catholic belief?

    May 11, 2012 at 10:12 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • DMC

      The players don't forfeit, the school does.

      May 11, 2012 at 10:29 am | Report abuse |
  8. Steve

    Every day I read a news story that re-enforces my opinon that religion is not good and makes people intolerant.

    May 11, 2012 at 10:12 am | Report abuse | Reply
  9. randman

    I find it particularly interesting that the girl apparently decided not to play the away games at the Catholic school, saying, “It was on their field, and I felt the need to respect their rules;" yet her mother complains about the "missed opportunity" and judges the Catholic school. I think the young athlete has taken the highest road here.

    May 11, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • MarkinFL

      And the school took the low road.

      May 11, 2012 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
  10. WhoopDeeDoo

    Let's settle this thing once and for all. Let's allow men and women to compete in the ring – boxing, MMA, etc...

    May 11, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse | Reply
  11. liz

    This isn't sad. There are lots of sad things in the world, but thisn't one. Apparently this team knew about the Catholic School rule leading up to this final game. So what's the big surprise?

    May 11, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Astra Navigo

    Only in Arizona; and only from the Catholics....

    May 11, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Are You Kidding?

    guess they were not wanting to get there _____ kicked by the young lady and scared of her. Guess it was also a team of future right wing conservative religious fanatic Republicans that seem to want to take away woman's rights and have women turning out babies instead.. The only reason we have soft ball is some scared men didn't want women playing sports....of any kind...........guess we know how Mitt would handle this backwards.........instead of forward...my views are those of Moderate Republican that thinks. And keeps wondering why it seems this election year women seem to be the targets of Republicans that say they want government out of our lives.

    May 11, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Fernando

      Guess you didn't read the part about she sitting out the 2 games where her team won....so in effect them losing to a girl had nothing to do with it. They probably would have lost anyway so you adding "losing to a girl" is just something people like you use to add fuel to your argument.

      May 11, 2012 at 10:20 am | Report abuse |
    • MarkinFL

      Sorry, they refused to play ONLY when they were faced with the likely prospect of losing to the girl. You comment actually supports that.

      May 11, 2012 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
  14. kh

    “It takes tremendous moral courage to stand by what it is you believe, and they are doing what they think is right,” Mesa Prep Headmaster Robert Wagner told KTVK.

    But unfortunately it takes some intelligence to know what's right, and they are apparently short on that.

    May 11, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • MarkinFL

      Many terrible things are done based on certain groups beliefs in all sorts of things. This is not one of those terrible things, it is a petty little thing. But praising someone for sticking to a foolish belief is not necessary. Integrity is not always a positive force.

      May 11, 2012 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
  15. good

    i wonder how the kids on that team felt about giving up the championship because the people who run their team are ignorant

    May 11, 2012 at 10:14 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • MarkinFL

      Well, they are being told to feel proud about it. I'll bet it causes more than one of them to start questioning these absolute rules that have no basis in reality.

      May 11, 2012 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
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