No matter what you think about teams running up the score against a significantly weaker opponent (and there’s plenty to read about that!), there’s one thing everyone seems to agree on: Parents and players on the winning team need to act as if they’ve been there before.
Don’t celebrate every goal in a blowout of 0-11 proportions as if your team just won the Stanley Cup. Of course players can celebrate and congratulate other team members on goals. They just need to be sure their celebrations aren’t rising to the level of gloating and goading the other team. (And sorry to the third-line wingers who never score and finally get a goal. You have to show a little class, too.)
Parents and fans (by which we mean grandparents) need to show a little restraint, too. Clapping and yelling “great goal”? Fine. Jumping up and down and screaming “woo hoo” while clanging your cowbell for the 10th goal? Too much.
Think about how you feel when you’re on the other end of a blowout. (And if you haven’t been there, rest assured you will be at some point!) Then celebrate accordingly.
Editor’s Note: Thank you to the parents who’ve endured this situation and suggested the topic.