The Joppatowne football team, which was 5-0 this season, has forfeited its first three victories because it had an ineligible player.
The team is appealing the decision.
Teri Kranefeld, manager of communication for Harford County Public Schools, said yesterday evening that Joppatowne officials, upon receiving a report the week of Sept. 24 that they had an ineligible player, had correctly followed the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association's regulations.
"They immediately investigated the charge and upon finding it to be true notified their first three opponents that they would be forfeiting those games," Kranefeld said. "After making the other schools aware, they then submitted the paperwork to us this week. Now, they will appeal the forfeits on the basis of the case."
Joppatowne opened its season by beating North Carroll, 26-7, followed by a 20-0 victory over Havre de Grace and a 34-0 rout of North East-Cecil. Those three games will, for the time being, go into the loss column, leaving the Mariners with a 2-3 record going into Friday's home game with Bel Air.
Joppatowne, ranked No. 12 in The Baltimore Sun poll, also has a 28-0 victory over Elkton and a 32-8 victory over Edgewood in which the player in question did not play. Kranefeld said the student did not play in games after the school was made aware of possible ineligibility.