Worst Sportsmanship? Dirty Soccer Video Goes Viral

Elizabeth Lambert's dirty play earns her a suspension -- and Internet stardom.

Nov. 9, 2009 — -- She's being called the dirtiest player in women's soccer.

From a punch in the back to a nasty ponytail grab that yanked her opponent to the ground, the University of New Mexico's Elizabeth Lambert made for rough play in a college soccer game against Brigham Young University that earned her a suspension from the game.

After a video posted on the Internet highlighted her harsh movess, Lambert rocketed to unintentional online fame. Hundreds have joined the Facebook group "Ban Elizabeth Lambert of New Mexico From College Soccer," leaving comments like "Why isn't she being brought up on charges? This is blatantly assault."

The junior defender was suspended indefinitely Friday for her actions but received only a yellow card in the game.

"Jerking on her opponent's ponytail and pulling her down, there is no place for that," said Christine Brennan, ABC News sports consultant. "It is wrong. It is not fair."

Such bad behavior might be something audiences are used to seeing from male athletes, from John McEnroe's relentless verbal tirades of the 1970s and 1980s to French footballer Zinedine Zidane's infamous headbutt in the 2006 World Cup.

But experts say it's more common in women's sports than most might think.

Last season, 11 players were suspended after a WNBA game between the Los Angeles Sparks and the Detroit Shock turned violent.

In 2003, an Illinois girl's football initiation sent five girls to the hospital.

Serena Williams' tirade at the U.S. Open did not sit well with most fans.

"I hope the lesson here is the millions of little girls playing sports in this country look at this and say, 'That is not how I am going to play,'" Brennan said.

Lambert Apologizes, School Takes Action

Lambert apologized for her actions, saying, "I let my emotions get the best of me in a heated situation."

Highlight reels reveal that the game was physical on both sides, and at one point Lambert was clearly elbowed by an opponent. Her actions, however, were too much for the school, which suspended her indefinitely.

"Liz is a quality student-athlete, but in this instance her actions clearly crossed the line for fair play and good sportsmanship," New Mexico coach Kit Vela told The Associated Press.

"This is in no way indicative of my character or the soccer player I am," Lambert said in her apology. "I am sorry to my coaches and teammates for any and all damages I have brought upon them. I am especially sorry to BYU and the BYU women's soccer players that were personally affected by my actions."