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Spokane soccer players suspended after posting blackface photo

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SPOKANE, Wash. — A private Christian university in Spokane says five members of the women’s soccer team were suspended from a match after a social media post surfaced showing them dressed in blackface and afro wigs.

Whitworth University says the players were suspended from a match Wednesday following their actions at an unofficial team event Monday night.

Head coach Jael Hagerott said in a statement that while the players’ “intentions were not malicious, the outcome of their actions was painful for many” in the community. His decision was supported by the university’s administration.

KXLY-TV reports that no further punishment will be taken by the university athletics department. But a separate investigation involving student conduct is moving forward.

An Instagram post showed the soccer players with faces painted black wearing afro wigs. The caption quoted a line from a Jackson 5 song.

Whitworth posted a response Tuesday from the school’s chief diversity officer.

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