By Adam Stites
Western Sun executive editor
A once-promising men’s volleyball season went down in flames for Golden West with a monumental collapse against Grossmont College on Friday, April 13 in the GWC gym that included a post-game melee that drew officers from the GWC Public Safety office and the Huntington Beach Police Department.
“There was an altercation started by one Grossmont College attendee,” said Public Safety Commissioner Jon Arnold. “Apparently he had an altercation with one of our student-athletes on the team.”
Despite winning each of the first two sets and jumping out to an early 3-0 lead in the third set, Grossmont rallied to win the set and the subsequent two sets.
With a win, Golden West would have competed in postseason play this weekend, but instead the loss dropped the Rustlers to fourth in the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference and eliminated them from the playoffs while Grossmont earned the third spot and an extension to their season.
The loss was met with frustration after the game that boiled over into heated words exchanged between the two teams shortly after the expiration of the match. The Grossmont coaches quickly gathered the Griffins players and evacuated the gym.
“Nothing physical happened between the two teams,” said Golden West Athletic Director Albert Gasparian. “A Grossmont fan came out of the stands and tackled one of the Golden West players from behind, which is really odd behavior.”
The ensuing chaos included several punches thrown, including some from Golden West players.
“I’m still trying to get to the bottom of who was involved first and acted inappropriately,” Gasparian said.
“If any type of verbal or unsportsmanlike behavior, whoever was involved will be talked to then they’ll most likely sit out the first game next year because the season’s over.”
“No crime report or any paperwork was documented by the police department,” Arnold said. “Our public safety officers just did a summary in the log of events.”
The loss was the third in four games for the Rustlers who were in contention for a PCAC title before a 3-0 loss to Orange Coast College on Wednesday, April 4 killed momentum for the team.