SILVER CITY, N.M. (KRQE) – A high school girl’s softball coach has been put on administrative leave after parents accused him of making the girls box him and each other. Parents told KRQE News 13 students were forced to fight each other during practice, getting nose bleeds and bruised hands. One mother said the coach even hit her daughter.

From 2011 to 2018, the Silver High School softball team were the reigning state champs. “They basically have an elite program,” said softball parent, Sonia Sanchez.

Sanchez’s daughter, a sophomore, plays on the team. But Sanchez said at a practice last week, the team did a type of training that wasn’t related to softball. “So they decided to have them box,” said Sanchez. Sanchez said the team’s strength and conditioning coach, Tylon Wilder, grabbed the gloves and headgear from his car.

“He continued to have a boxing match with my daughter,” said Sanchez. “So an ex-marine in his 40s who lifts weights daily having a boxing match with a 17 year-old teenager. I do know he hit her in the chest two times, he hit her in the ribs in the stomach, she was very nauseated and she had to continue.”

Sanchez said Wilder pitted the students against each other, which she said left one girl with a nose bleed. “According to the girls, she was bleeding extensively, wiping her blood from her face but the coaches kept telling her ‘keep going, keep going, keep going,'” said Sanchez. Other parents told News 13 off camera that one of the girls’ knuckles were so badly bruised, she couldn’t play in this past Saturday’s game.

“She got pulled from the game because she had an error because she couldn’t hold the bat right, she couldn’t hit the ball,” said Sanchez. “She did had bruising, her mom thought she had a fracture.”

The Silver Consolidated Schools Superintendent, Audie Brown, told News 13 in an email he couldn’t disclose details of employee disciplinary matters but said that the employee was placed on administrative leave after getting reports of unacceptable conduct in the girl’s softball program. “I want them to understand this is not okay and I want kids in the future to be protected, period,” said Sanchez.

News 13 reached out to a man we believe is Wilders via social media. We asked for an interview but did not hear back. Superintendent Brown said the district is conducting its own investigation but the allegations were also reported to police.

New Mexico state law prohibits the Silver Consolidated School District from disclosing the details of employee disciplinary matters. However, the District can confirm that the employee was placed on administrative leave immediately following our receipt of reports of unacceptable conduct in the girls’ softball program. The allegations were also promptly reported to law enforcement and the Public Education Department. The District is conducting its own internal investigation and will take all necessary corrective actions to address any wrongdoing that is found. We thank our community for their support of our schools and our parents can be assured of Silver Schools’ commitment to student safety and well-being.

Audie Brown, Silver Consolidated Schools Superintendent