Tuesday, Dec. 08, 2009

Soccer's Ponytail Yanker

In which sport would you expect to see an assault that sickens fans around the world? Boxing? Hockey? Mixed martial arts? Try women's college soccer. During a Mountain West Conference playoff game between the University of New Mexico and Brigham Young University, New Mexico's Elizabeth Lambert punched an opponent in the face while chasing a loose ball, punched another in the back and, most horrifyingly, felled a Brigham Young player by yanking her ponytail so hard that it looked like Lambert could have snapped her neck. Footage of Lambert's conduct spread quickly online, and New Mexico suspended her indefinitely, not just from competition but from all team practices and conditioning activities. Lambert issued a full apology. "My actions were uncalled for," she said. "I let the emotions get the best of me in a heated situation." A Facebook group, "Ban Elizabeth Lambert of New Mexico from College Soccer," attracted nearly 5,700 members.