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Housatonic/Wamogo forfeits football game against Lewis Mills

POSTED October 25, 2013
BY John Nestor
Twitter: @nestorjdn

Housatonic/Wamogo forfeits football game against Lewis Mills

BURLINGTON – Lewis Mills won its first football game on Thursday afternoon but it wasn’t on the field and the Spartans won’t feel satisfied.

Housatonic interim athletic director Anne MacNeil contacted Lewis Mills AD Dave Tanner on Thursday and told him The team would have to forfeit Saturday’s game.

The game was scheduled for 2 p.m. at Muzzy Field in Bristol where Lewis Mills plays its home games. Tanner wouldn’t go into specifics about the reason but did confirm the forfeit.

“Housatonic notified me this afternoon that they had to forfeit Saturdays game,” Tanner said. “It's been officially entered as a forfeit.”

The Spartans are coming off a tough 17-14 loss at Granby last Saturday afternoon. Playing better and having come so close, there is no doubt Lewis Mills was looking forward to the Housy game as one it could win, but not this way.

On the other side Housatonic has been on a slide for about two years.  The Mountaineers are 0-5 after a 41-6 loss to Avon on Saturday. Housatonic’s closest game this season was a 30-8 loss to Stafford/East Windsor.

Housatonic has lost 21 straight games and last won on Oct. 15 2011 when it defeated Granby, 39-8 to improve to 4-0 that season. That's was the recent high point for the Mountaineers who went winless last season and have had a tough start to the 2013 campaign.

Now injuries and illness have decimated an already low on numbers roster. 

"We have been facing low numbers for a few years, but in the past few weeks they have been very low," Housatonic coach Deron Bayer said. "During the past few weeks we have had about 15 kids at practice some days due to various things such as injuries and illness."

Housatonic has a rich history but is a small school and has been struggling to fill a healthy roster despite a co-op with Wamogo. It has been a tough season and a half in Falls Village but the Mountaineers always competed but it got to the point where there was a feeling that it couldn't be done safely.

"We started the year with about 30 kids and some of those players decided the sport was not for them," Bayer said. "We have some younger players starting on offense, defense and special teams, however we are thin on subs. Our concern was for player safety if we had to make more than a few substitutions."

Bayer said that the situation will be evaluated on a week to week basis. The next scheduled game for Housatonic is November 2 at home vs. Coginchaug. It sounds as if the Mountaineers will make every effort to play, but the are no guarantees.

"This has been the most difficult decision I have had to take part in as a coach due to the fact that our boys work so hard and always play to the best of their abilities," Bayer said.

Housatonic's forfeit is the second of the weekend and third of the season in the state. Immaculate of Danbury has forfeited this weekend's game against Stratford due to low numbers and safety concerns.

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