Coal Grove’s Win by Forfeit Being Appealed

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The Ohio High School Athletic Association declared the Trimble-Coal Grove football game a forfeit win for Coal Grove. The showdown between the two was originally planned for Friday September 16, but due to a meningitis outbreak, Coal Grove was unable to host the tomcats.

According to the Ironton Tribune, the game was to be played on Monday, Oct. 17, but when Trimble didn’t honor the agreement, the OHSAA declared it a win for Coal Grove and a loss for Trimble. Coach Faires, Trimble head coach, and Superintendent Kim Jones agreed it was unfair to their players to force them to play three games in one week or eight days. This could cause injuries and could affect fatigue for entire team.

Kim Jones followed the ruling from OHSAA by writing a letter to the Athens Messenger explaining Trimble High School’s position on the matter, and the decision to appeal the ruling.

On October 13, Jones received a letter from the OHSAA asking if Trimble was willing to reschedule the game. “I expressed my concern that, given the current emphasis on preventing concussions, perhaps playing three varsity football games within eight days was risky, but offered to defer to their expertise as to whether this was the case,” Kim Jones said in response to the letter.

However, on Thursday, October 20, rather than guidance on this issue, she received the response that they were to forfeit the contest. “We will appeal this decision,” Jones admitted.

Jones and Local Trimble schools are very concerned with the message the decision of OHSAA sends: that districts don’t need to communicate with one another about potential health risks; that games must be played regardless of the situation; and that individual districts must determine for themselves what comprises a safe rate of play in our most physical student contact sport.

Trimble and Coal Grove both await the decision of the Trimble appeal.