WEST HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — A bench-clearing brawl broke out at the end of Monday’s basketball game between West Hartford’s rival high schools, Conard and Hall, as fans swarmed the court. Athletes threw punch after punch at one another. West Hartford police say seven or eight different videos of that melee are now evidence.
“We have 10 students and former students that are going to be arrested,” said Lt. Ted Stoneburner. “We are applying for arrest warrants now.”
The fight started after a last-second shot won the game. Fans stormed the court.
“There was a huge mob, and we were trying to like hug the players and celebrate, and this whole thing was going on behind us on the other side of the court,” said senior Jack Monnes, who was at the game. “I had no idea.”
While the fight didn’t last long, videos started popping up on social media almost instantly. Students were surprised by what they saw. Elena Pevar was at the game and says she had no idea there was a fight, shocking her when she saw the videos on social media.
“There were tons of people hitting the same person, someone would come up from behind them and hit them,” said Pevar.
Students say the rivalry has gotten worse over the years thanks to social media, with trash-talking over Twitter and Facebook. Hall and Conard’s hockey teams square off on the ice Saturday, an opportunity for the rivalry to flare up.
“They can expect a very large police presence,” said Lt. Stoneburner, speaking about the hockey game. “School security officers will be there also.”
Pevar says she will go to the rink and watch the game. She hopes all the action stays on the ice.
“What do you expect?” we asked.
“Hopefully not another fight, but it may happen,” she said.
Police say they will start the arrest process next week.