MIAA Denies Appeal of Mount Greylock Boys Soccer Forfeits

By Stephen DravisiBerkshires.com Sports
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- The Mount Greylock boys soccer team goes into Monday’s Senior Night game against Amherst knowing for sure that its season will end after Tuesday’s road finale at Frontier.
The Mounties learned Monday that the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association has denied the school’s appeal of an MIAA decision that requires Mount Greylock to forfeit its first seven games, including six games it won.
Without those victories, the Mounties (officially 2-11-1 with two games left) cannot hit the .500 winning percentage they need to earn a berth in the MIAA Western Massachusetts playoffs.
The forfeits arise from the school’s self-reporting of an administrative error that allowed an ineligible player on the Mounties’ roster at the start of the season.
“Throughout this process, I have been unfailingly impressed by the coaching staff and players with the dignity and composure they’ve shown,” Mount Greylock Principal Mary MacDonald said. “None of this was their fault.”
On Monday, MacDonald and Athletic Director Lindsey von Holtz went to the MIAA office in Franklin for an appeal hearing.
MacDonald said late Monday that the hearing allowed the school officials to elaborate on paperwork they already submitted to the state governing body.
“You submit a number of documents in advance and explain how [the error] occurred, the reason why you’re appealing and the remedy in place,” MacDonald said. “We have created a form that creates a paper trail to make sure this doesn’t happen again.”
MacDonald said the pair received balanced questions from a six-person appeals panel, which asked for more detail on both the cause and the remedy.
“We went into the process with a vigorous set of documents that were clear, honest and straightforward,” MacDonald said. “This was an administrative error. It was not the responsibility of a player or a coach.”
About two and a half hours after the hearing, MacDonald and von Holtz were notified of the decision by phone while they were returning to Williamstown.
MacDonald said there is no further appeal of the decision.
“This is the end of the process,” she said.
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