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Out Soccer Player & Teammates Dominate Rivals Who Threw Antigay Slur

Out Soccer Player Learns Team Has His Back After Opponent Hurls Slur

When out soccer player Couper Gunn was subjected to a homophobic slur during league play last week, his teammates came through for him — on and off the field.

According to OutSports and a video he posted to TikTok after the game, it was just before halftime in last Wednesday’s game against rival Rivier University, when an opposing player walked past Gunn (who is the co-captain of Colby-Sawyer College's team) and made a reference to the Pride armband he wears for games.

“Get that f*ggot armband off of you,” Gunn recalled what was said to him for Cyd Zeigler of OutSports.

“It happened just before halftime, so needless to say at halftime I was pretty upset,” Gunn posted to TikTok after the game.

Gunn said the team was already upset being tied with a team they considered inferior. And the homophobic attack on one of their own did nothing to lighten the mood in the locker room.

“The first real emotion was just fury at the audacity of someone using a homophobic slur like that,” Lucas Boetsch, a fellow co-captain on the team, told OutSports. “It was outrageous to us.”

“I was completely off my game to start the second half,” Gunn admitted to OutSports.

Thankfully for Colby-Sawyer fans, his teammates were not as distracted. They scored five unanswered goals, including two unassisted goals in a 45-second span by freshman Conner McKearin and a hat trick of three goals by junior Finn Husband, to notch their first win of the season. The team finished with 16 total shots, including 10 on goal, compared to only four total shots for Rivier. It was a dominating performance that shut down any doubt about who was the better team on the field and off the field.

“When my teammates came in, immediately to start the second half, they brought the energy and made it easier for me to get my head back into the game,” Gunn said in the video posted to TikTok. “We went on to beat them five-zero and embarrassed them at their fields, under their lights, in front of their home fans.”

Rivier’s athletic director told OutSports the on-field incident has been appropriately handled but provided no further information.

“Rivier takes any negative speech or actions seriously and is in all ways against them,” Joanne Merrill, Rivier AD, told OutSports in a statement. “We have taken this incident very seriously and have handled it in a way we view as appropriate. We regret that it happened and it in no way reflects what we are about and what we try to model.”

While the first victory of the season is welcomed by Gunn, the lasting memory of the game for him will be how his teammates rallied to his support when he needed it the most.

“I felt incredibly supported by my coach and my teammates, and I wanted to share that with you guys because I don’t think there are enough stories in sports about things like this,” Gunn said on TikTok.

RELATED | Soccer Team Captain Wears Pride Shirt, Comes Out in Sweet Story

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