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Native American hair bun at game prompts outcry

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Posted at 9:02 PM, Feb 04, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-05 13:10:23-05

The girls on the Flagstaff High School basketball team plan to show up to their crosstown rivalry game Friday with traditional Navajo buns in their hair.

But unlike what happened at a game on Tuesday, sports officials say they won't be asked to remove the hair pieces that were deemed a safety hazard.

The call by a referee at the game played in Flagstaff has been sharply criticized online, by the school's principal and the president of the Navajo Nation.

The girls complied with the ruling, removing the hair ties worn in celebration of Native American cultural might.

The Arizona Interscholastic Association, which governs high school sports, apologized for the call, but it said the official acted within his authority and by the rulebook.

The association says the hair buns won't be prohibited at future games.