“Friday night in our match against Brigham Young University my fellow African American teammates and I were targeted and racially heckled throughout the entirety of the match,” Richardson tweeted. “The slurs and comments grew into threats which caused us to feel unsafe.”
“My Goddaughter is the only black starter for Dukes volleyball team. While playing yesterday, she was called a n***er every time she served,” Pamplin’s tweet read.
Richardson said both BYU officials and coaching staff were made aware of the incident during the game, “but failed to take the necessary steps to stop the unacceptable behavior and create a safe environment.” Even after the incident was brought to their attention, Richardson said BYU officials “failed to adequately address the situation.”
The harassment resulted in Richardson and her teammates struggling to get through the game, as opposed to just being able to focus on their play, she tweeted.
“No athlete, regardless of their race should ever be subject to such hostile conditions,” Richardson’s tweet read.
Richardson also addressed comments that she or her teammates should have refused to continue playing.
“Although the heckling eventually took a mental toll on me, I refused to allow it to stop me from doing what I love to do and what I came to BYU to do; which was to play volleyball,” her tweet read. “I refused to allow those racist bigots to feel any degree of satisfaction from thinking that their comments had ‘gotten to me’. So, I pushed through and finished the game.”
Despite the incident, Richardson said she does not believe this was a reflection of BYU athletes. She complimented their players on a great game and showing “nothing but respect and good sportsmanship on and off the court.”
“When a student-athlete or a fan comes to a BYU sporting event, we expect that they will be treated with love and respect and feel safe on our campus. It is for this reason BYU has banned a fan who was identified by Duke during last night’s volleyball match from all BYU athletic venues,” according to the statement.
“We wholeheartedly apologize to Duke University and especially its student-athletes competing last night for what they experienced,” the statement read.
The statement said the person in question was not a BYU student, despite sitting in the student section.
“They should always have the opportunity to compete in an inclusive, anti-racist environment which promotes equality and fair play,” Duke’s statement read.
CNN’s Matt Foster contributed to this report.