Suddenly Buhach Colony has become the Evil Empire.
They're classless. They're about winning at all costs. They run up the score.
That pretty much sums up what a lot of people were saying online after the Thunder defeated Del Campo 28-7 on Friday night to advance to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division 2 semifinals against Vacaville.
You think it's possible the Buhach bashing has gone too far?
The next thing I expect to hear is that when they're not taunting inferior teams, they're out pepper- spraying other students and kicking puppies off bridges.
By now, most people saw, read or heard about the shouting match that took place between several coaches from Del Campo and Buhach Colony after the game.
It was an ugly scene of coaches behaving badly.
The boiling point for Del Campo came when Buhach Colony attempted an onside kick when leading 21 lead and with
1 minute, 17 seconds left to play.
On the surface, you can understand Del Campo's frustration.
You're already watching your season come to an end, and the opposing team is trying an onside kick at the end of the game.
Still, the Cougars coaches overracted.
If they were upset, it should have been DC head coach Mike Dimino bringing it up with Kevin Swartwood after the game. Not the Del Campo assistants going crazy.
Making throat-slashing gestures with your hands, yelling and pointing fingers at the opposing team isn't exactly setting a good example for your players.
Such gestures have no business anywhere near a high school event.
Swartwood further explained his decision on the kick Monday.
It had to do more with cheap shots than tacking on points.
"People can rip my decision, I understand that," Swartwood said. "(Del Campo) got a personal foul earlier (in the fourth quarter) for cut-blocking Aaron (Cochran). That was their second personal foul. Then they got another personal foul when one of their guys drove our guy, Enrique (Covarrubias), 10 yards out of bounds on the last touchdown.
"My thinking at that point was: 'Lets onside kick, get the ball back, take three kneel-downs and get out of here.'
"I know the perception may be we were trying to get the ball to score again. I know people who don't know me may not believe it. They'll say he's just being a jerk and that's fine."
Would I onside kick in that spot?
I'd kick it deep. Then all the postgame drama might not have happened.
The problem is if you onside-kick and don't get the ball, you look as if you're trying to run up the score.
That, of course, opens you up to criticism. And there was plenty.
It doesn't take much courage to sit behind the cover of a screen name and sling arrows in comments that run under stories online.
Clearly, people like to take their shots at the teams on top. They want to tear them down.
We saw a lot of the same stuff during Merced's run a few years ago.
Then people claimed the Bears were a bunch of thugs. They were undisciplined.
Such comments are sad.
These teams should be applauded for their accomplishments. These are memories these players will carry with them rest of their lives.
I've been covering high school sports at the Sun-Star for 12 years.
I haven't seen a lack of class on the Thunder sideline this year. Just as I didn't see those thugs who were supposedly playing for Merced.
If Buhach Colony was trying to run up scores, why did they have junior varsity call-ups playing most of the fourth quarter against Lodi in the first round and the game out of reach?
Some people have pointed to the 90 points the Thunder scored against Golden Valley as proof. Those people must have forgotten that the score was 48-40 at halftime.
Buhach only scored seven points in the fourth quarter with its starters on the sideline.
I didn't hear any complaints coming from GV coaches after the game about the 90 points. In fact, Golden Valley coach Jake Messina even confirmed he called Swartwood on the morning after the game to thank Swartwood for not running up the score.
"I stay off the blogs, but my coaches and players go on there and they've told me it's pretty bad," Swartwood said. "They're telling me we're getting hammered. I told them they've got to let it go. If people want to rip me for the onside kick, that's fine. I can take it, but it's tough for high school kids to let it go."
It's time we all moved on.
Shawn Jansen is a Sun-Star sports reporter. He can be reached at 385-2462 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.