Dec. 4 (UPI) -- A high school football team in Texas was removed from the playoffs Friday after a player charged from the sideline and tackled a referee during a game this week.
During a playoff game Thursday night, Edinburg High School senior defensive lineman Emmanuel Duron blindsided 58-year-old referee Fred Gracia after the official announced Duron had been ejected from the game.
Duron was disqualified after he received back-to-back unsportsmanlike conduct penalties. According to The Monitor of McAllen, Duron was penalized for shoving an opposing offensive lineman to the ground, attempting to tackle the quarterback after the whistle had blown and exchanging words with Gracia.
Shortly after the announcement, Duron ran onto the field and headed directly toward Gracia. At least one Edinburg player and a staff member attempted to chase Duron, but they were unable to prevent him from knocking down Gracia at full speed.
Four police officers escorted Duron out of the stadium, according to the Monitor. On Friday, he was charged with Class A assault, a misdemeanor.
Duron, 18, posted his $10,000 bond and was released from county jail Friday evening, according to online records.
The incident occurred during the first half of Edinburg's 35-21 playoff win. Despite the victory, the team's season is now over.
"The district has decided to remove the Edinburg High School football team from the playoffs after an unexpected incident involving a student that occurred during a football game on December 3, 2020," the Edinburg Consolidated Independent School District said in a statement Friday.
"We extend a sincere apology to the referee and his family. On behalf of the Edinburg CISD Board of Trustees and administration, we apologize to the athletes, staff, and our school community. We will take the appropriate disciplinary action once we understand the facts and circumstances underlining this incident."
Duron, the District 31-6A Defensive Player of the Year last season, also is the Bobcats' kicker and punter, and he wrestles at the school.