A canceled football game between Dunbar and Glenville of Cleveland, which both schools hastily tried to reschedule Friday after police made two arrests in the series of sniper shootings, could cost the Tarblooders a spot in Ohio's playoffs.
Glenville (7-2) entered the weekend needing a win over Dunbar (6-1) in its final regular season game to boost its playoff point average and qualify for the eight-team Division I Region 1 playoffs. Without the game, Glenville is a half-point from making the playoffs.
"What do I tell our seniors? We were ready to go," Glenville Coach Ted Ginn said yesterday. "This game doesn't have a lot of meaning for [Dunbar]. But for us, this is our season."
The game was originally scheduled for yesterday, but was canceled nearly two weeks ago because of Glenville's concerns about traveling to Washington during the sniper shootings. The Tarblooders offered to host the eighth-ranked Crimson Tide, but Dunbar declined because it had a long trip to Glen Mills (Pa.) scheduled for Oct. 18.
After the two sniper suspects were caught, Glenville officials contacted Dunbar on Friday morning to see if the game could be played. After trying unsuccessfully to secure officials, Dunbar and D.C. Interscholastic Athletic Association informed Glenville at 6 p.m. that they could not play.
"It was a last-minute thing," said Allen Chin, the executive director of the D.C. Interscholastic Athletic Association. "I'm not a miracle worker. We worked on this until 4 p.m. [Friday]. There were a lot of makeup games in Montgomery County, and a lot of our referees do college games on Saturdays."
Glenville offered to bring referees from Ohio, but Dunbar refused.
"Knowing they needed a win and they wanted to bring their own officials, I was a little bit uncomfortable with that," Dunbar Coach Craig Jefferies said. "If we had found officials, we would have played them."
Ginn said that he will petition the Ohio High School Athletic Association to rule the game a forfeit. But OHSAA bylaws only allow for forfeits in games which are played.