League cancels youth football season after fatal shooting
WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Capital Sports Institute canceled its 2020 Wichita Youth Football Season following a deadly shooting at Stryker Sports Complex Wednesday night.
“This youth football league was developed with a genuine hope to change the culture surrounding youth football in Wichita,” a Facebook post by the league read. “To give inner-city children the opportunity to play under the lights on turf fields, with large crowds cheering them on to victory. To allow those children to feel cared for, important, and worthy. To give families a safe, secure environment where their children can learn to play sports. To allow the Wichita youth some time to simply be kids in the midst of a global pandemic.”
According to the league, fights, littering and arguments at games were an issue and lead to a permanent presence of Wichita Police and extra costs associated with it.
“As a league, we can no longer safely continue with the 2020 season, as it is clearly too dangerous for the children and families of this city. Our pleas and desires to change the culture of youth football in Wichita have consistently fallen on deaf ears.”
Jaxon Avila coaches Wichita Tigers fifth graders. He said the league did what it could to keep everyone safe. He also said the league is a necessary outlet to help keep kids off the streets.
“...to stay away from trouble, gangs, violence and drugs, and stuff like that. So, for something like this to happen at a youth football even or any kind of youth event in general, it’s just really sad,” Avila said.
The league sent hopes and prayers to the family of the man killed, as well as the league families and children. Thursday morning Wichita police identified that man as Marquell (Marky) Nolen.
“It is our genuine hope that as a city, as a people, as a culture, we can and will do better.”
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