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Taft Admits to Violating Rule With a Practice on Labor Day

September 07, 2000|ERIC SONDHEIMER | From Staff Reports

Taft High's football team violated rules by practicing on Labor Day and could face punishment from the City Section Rules Committee.

Principal Myra Fullerton of Taft said Wednesday that Coach Troy Starr admitted he held the practice but was unaware it violated City rules.

"It was a mistake," Fullerton said. "He recognizes it was a mistake. There was no intention to skirt or take advantage of the practice. He did not have a full team there."

As punishment, Fullerton barred the team from practicing Wednesday and next Monday. The Toreadors play Banning on Friday in their opener.

Only City teams that play today were allowed to practice on Labor Day. Last year, Taft practiced on Labor Day because it had a game on Thursday.

Starr said he misinterpreted information provided at a meeting of City coaches last month.

"It was a flat-out mistake," he said. "And let me tell you something--I didn't want to practice on Labor Day."

Taft could face additional penalties because the program was on probation for allowing Gerard Jones, a transfer from Reseda, to practice last September before the proper paperwork had been completed. That probation was scheduled to end Saturday.

At the time, Barbara Fiege, City Section commissioner, said further transgressions will result in "the hammer coming down on Taft."

But Fiege said Wednesday the Rules Committee will take into account whether the violation was similar to the previous one and weigh precedence in deciding an appropriate action."

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