Keppel forfeits wild-card win due to ineligible player.

FULL STORY ON KEPPEL FORFEIT

Keppel’s remarkable baseball season came to a disappointing end Friday when the CIF-Southern Section announced the Aztecs will have to forfeit their wild-card win from earlier this week because of an ineligible player, thus eliminating them from the playoffs.

Keppel (8-17) was set to play at Elsinore on Friday afternoon in the first round of the Division 3 playoffs, but instead rode the long bus ride back to school from Wildomar after the violation came to light. The Aztecs will forfeit their wild-card win against Hawthorne, and Hawthorne moves on to play the first round game today at Elsinore.

Keppel coach Houston Hernandez received a call from his administration just as he was stepping off the bus at Elsinore. About a half hour later, he was informed the Aztecs had to pack up and head home.

“This is probably one of the worst days ever,” said Hernandez before elaborating. “It was definitely an administrative error, period. Somebody didn’t do their job and now we have to suffer for it.”

The CIF-SS sent out a statement Friday evening, alluding that more forfeits is a possibility.

“Mark Keppel is faced with the potential loss of every win this season depending on the number of games their ineligible player appeared in,” the statement read. “Information was received by the CIF-Southern Section office this afternoon of a player who transferred from another CIF-SS school without proper paperwork.”

Hernandez said he was succinct when delivering the message, and players mingled on the field in disbelief.

“They stayed on the field for about 20 minutes and it sunk in that all their hard work had been taken away,” Hernandez said. “It was emotional out there, and I was too. How could everything we did be swept away because someobody didn’t do their job.”

Keppel, which finished tied for third with Schurr in the Almont League, earned its first playoff berth this season for the first time in at least a decade. The Aztecs were 7-93 in the five years prior to Hernandez taking over three eyars ago, and the program had won just two of their 75 league games.

“There was nothing that these boys or myself could have done to make the situation any better,” Hernandez said. “It’s a little hard and a little embarassing the way it ended. There was was nothing that these boys or myself could have done to make this situation any better. It really hurts, but hopefully push us really hard for next year.”

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  • Ahahaha

    Keppel baseball keppel baseball you always fimd ways to dig yourselves into the dumps at the end of the day hahaha you chassssassasaaak go Sg!!!!

  • Hang in there Keppel

    It’s too bad for the kids that the game was forfeited. The coach should have known the rules, if players are new to a school, it is his job to inform the administration that 207 and 510 forms need to be turned into cif. Besides, whoever turned in the kid, should have done it before the season started not the day of the game.

  • Aztecs

    Typical excuse from an incompetent coach. The fault lies squarely on Coach Hernandez shoulders. Do your job coach.

  • Backup Coach H

    Not coaches fault. He did everything he was asked to do. CIF doesn’t want coaches pushing transfer paperwork through. Not surprised this happened…the admin were warned something like this would happen.

  • Aztec

    I agree coach should not be filing paperwork, but it is there job to know there kids and have awareness of CIF rules. Coach H and the AD are equally to blame. For Coach H to stay someone didn’t do their job he needs to look in the mirror.

  • Aztec

    I agree coach should not be filing paperwork, but it is there job to know there kids and have awareness of CIF rules. Coach H and the AD are equally to blame. For Coach H to stay someone didn’t do their job he needs to look in the mirror.

  • On the Side-lines

    No matter how much “spin” or “flavor” you want to add to this most unfortunate incident, the true victims here are those poor students/players. After a season of hard work, sweat, and dozens of hours out in the field, their dreams and love for the sport have suddenly and unjustly been taken away. Why? Solely because a “clerical”, paperwork error and oversight??? An administrative snafu? A single piece of paper probably still sitting in an administrator’s desk? Or is the real reason more cynical and political motivated? Why would the coach of the “other school” (a private, “religious” school) wait for the last day/hour/game to snitch on the team? The most important game of the ENTIRE season (just hours prior to the kids hitting the field), and suddenly the other coach finds his “religious and moral compass” to make that call to complain that the proper paper work was never completed/approved? These are the politics of the sport; an adult (coach) taking out his own personal agenda, vendetta against other adults. And right in the middle of this crossfire are the poor players who perhaps still have no idea of why their playoff game was taken away. Shame on the adults who are NOT acting like adults, and for a coach who perhaps finally found the right opportunity to “stick it” to the other coach/parents/team. A painful lesson for all the students on what happens when Political (bureaucratic) Science mixes with the spirit of sport. The bottom line: Those players, lead by a firm and dedicated coaching staff, earned their place in the CIF finals. They played with their hearts, with Pride and true dedication to the team and sport. Congratulations Coach H. and Aztecs players for a VERY successful season! You earned it!!

  • On the side-lines

    No matter how much “spin” or “flavor” you want to add to this most unfortunate incident, the true victims here are those poor students/players. After a season of hard work, sweat, and dozens of hours out in the field, their dreams and love for the sport have suddenly and unjustly been taken away. Why? Solely because a “clerical”, paperwork error and oversight??? An administrative snafu? A single piece of paper probably still sitting in an administrator’s desk? Or is the real reason more cynical and political motivated? Why would the coach of the “other school” (a private, “religious” school) wait for the last day/hour/game to snitch on the team? The most important game of the ENTIRE season (just hours prior to the kids hitting the field), and suddenly the other coach finds his “religious and moral compass” to make that call to complain that the proper paper work was never completed/approved? These are the politics of the sport; an adult (coach) taking out his own personal agenda, vendetta against other adults. And right in the middle of this crossfire are the poor players who perhaps still have no idea of why their playoff game was taken away. Shame on the adults who are NOT acting like adults, and for a coach who perhaps finally found the right opportunity to “stick it” to the other coach/parents/team. A painful lesson for all the students on what happens when Political (bureaucratic) Science mixes with the spirit of sport. The bottom line: Those players, lead by a firm and dedicated coaching staff, earned their place in the CIF finals. They played with their hearts, with Pride and true dedication to the team and sport. Congratulations Coach H. and Aztecs players for a VERY successful season! You earned it!!

  • On the Sidelines

    No matter how much “spin” or “flavor” you want to add to this most unfortunate incident, the true victims here are those poor students/players. After a season of hard work, sweat, and dozens of hours out in the field, their dreams and love for the sport have suddenly and unjustly been taken away. Why? Solely because a “clerical”, paperwork error and oversight??? An administrative snafu? A single piece of paper probably still sitting in an administrator’s desk? Or is the real reason more cynical and political motivated? Why would the coach of the “other school” (a private, “religious” school) wait for the last day/hour/game to snitch on the team? The most important game of the ENTIRE season (just hours prior to the kids hitting the field), and suddenly the other coach finds his “religious and moral compass” to make that call to complain that the proper paper work was never completed/approved? These are the politics of the sport; an adult (coach) taking out his own personal agenda, vendetta against other adults. And right in the middle of this crossfire are the poor players who perhaps still have no idea of why their playoff game was taken away. Shame on the adults who are NOT acting like adults, and for a coach who perhaps finally found the right opportunity to “stick it” to the other coach/parents/team. A painful lesson for all the students on what happens when Political (bureaucratic) Science mixes with the spirit of sport. The bottom line: Those players, lead by a firm and dedicated coaching staff, earned their place in the CIF finals. They played with their hearts, with Pride and true dedication to the team and sport. Congratulations Coach H. and Aztecs players for a VERY successful season! You earned it!!

  • MK parent

    Coach H you need to stop pointing the finger at someone else and point to yourself. All you needed to do is file paper work your the coach you are the one that knows the rules. Blame yourself tell your team it your falut because you didn’t do your job.

  • http://wtfanon.com anon

    i heard the AD for keppel misplaced the forms for the transferred player. not the coaches fault he has every right to get mad. blame the AD

  • A SAN GABRIEL :

    Hey San Gabriel! you better shut your mouth…your swim team sucks as well! the only school you ever beat was Bell Gardens!

  • AHS Parent

    What a shame for the student athletes, the parents and the fans of Aztec Baseball. The last couple of years their program has been building. The parents are always positive and encouraging from the stands whether they lead or trial. The coach shows himself to be a true role model from the dugout.Its a drag this happened to a fine program like Keppels. Now, if this had happened to Montebello…

  • AHS Parent

    What a shame for the student athletes, the parents and the fans of Aztec Baseball. The last couple of years their program has been building. The parents are always positive and encouraging from the stands whether they lead or trial. The coach shows himself to be a true role model from the dugout.Its a drag this happened to a fine program like Keppels. Now, if this had happened to Montebello…

  • http://coach4life m. niesen

    Having been a baseball coach for 14 yrs, the coach and AD at Keppel knew or should have known the CIF rule on this, it’s their job.
    In reading these blogs, especially from “sidelined” who i am sure is a Keppel parent, I find it funny how everybody is blaming everybody else. The bottom line is Keppel cheated and got caught. I gurantee you that every player and parent on Keppel’s team new this player was illegal and now since the punishment has come down they want to get all indignant and have everybody feel sorry for the kids. Keppel it’s AD, coaches and parents have no one to blame but themselves. hopefully lesson learned DON’T CHEAT.

  • Beckie Williams

    Seems this sort of thing goes on a lot. I know for a fact that their is an illegal player on La Salle’s baseball team. he transfered from a high school in El Monte, where he played on Varsity. He was given a scholorship to come and play baseball at La Salle. Wonder if the same rule will apply to them that applied to Keppel.

  • astonished

    M Niesen
    I have a question for u!! i called several coaches on this topic and many of them were also under the same impression so here it goes. The paper work that CIF wanted does it only have to be submitted if the player in question played any type of varsity sport the prior year with their old school? The reason I asked is the player in question was on JV last year at his old school never played one varsity game, Many coaches have told me that they thought u only submit paperwork to cif if the player had played varsity the prior year and now has transfered can u inlighten me in thi squestion anyone please.?

  • m niesen

    Astonished,
    Any time a player transfers AFTER their sophmore year, it doesn’t matter whether they played JV or Varsity they are relegated to JV unless, they have moved out of their current school district or they are granted a hardship from CIF. Read page 74 of the CIF handbook, it is very clear on the matter. To many coaches and AD’s don’t bother to learn the rules. When the Keppel coach found out that his new player was a transfer he should have notified his AD that paper work needed to be sent to the prior schools AD, that’s how it works.
    I will say that it is my experience that these players are usually turned in by digruntled parents either on their own team or a team in their league that knows that the player has transferred.

  • astonished

    Mr. Neisen
    I will tell u this Im not a parent on Mark keppels team but I do know a few especially this kid. I will tell you he transfered from a private school to keppel due to the academics were way superb then the private school. I know that the kid lives in the district and actually got a permit to attend Mark Keppel. The AD was given a roster from my understanding to check that everyone was eligible. The AD dropped the ball here now u stated that they got caught cheating right? well theire recruiter should be shot or fired cause the player in question was a bench player he was not a star transfer like the rest of the schools got. Im sorry if I disagree with you about whos to blame the AD was give his task and he or she decided not to do it. If the coach pushes the paperwork through and this still happens what would you say then! That he recruited this player and so on. I agree read the rules but damn it u get paid to be an AD do your job.

  • m. niesen

    Astonished,
    You are correct, the AD at Keppel is at fault, but so is the coach as he knew that this player was a transfer and should have been on JV. You mention that this player is a bench player. Let me tell you that no coach or AD is going to be vindictive about a bench player transfering, since transfering from private to public they would not even be in same league.I still say that a disgruntled parent from Keppel or a school in that league called the former schools AD and informed him that the player was on varsity at Keppel.According to CIF rules he has to call and report that he didn’t receive paperwork or his program is in jepordy. I am wondering what you mean by recruiter, recruiting in high school sports is illegal.

  • What

    Wow astonished! What does this mean “due to the academics were way superb then the private school” Did you attend Keppel and get those way superb academics?You sound like a disgruntled former private school parent that had to move your baseball player to Keppel. Why would the former school care about a kid that played JV last year? They don’t play Keppel. If he was stil there he would have rode the bench just like at Keppel. It’s a shame that the whole team has to suffer because of things that the AD and Coach Failed to do. Everyone is a fan of the “Private School” until thier kid has to leave or gets the boot. Good luck Keppel next year.

  • Keppel Alum

    I am so disgusted. Coach H. needs to be fired for stupidity alone. What kinda coach risks his whole season for a bench player who contributed next to nothing to this team to get to where they were. What an idiot

  • Dave

    Too bad for the kids that worked hard before and during the season. Sounds like there a serious lack of communication between the coaching staff and school administration. When it comes down to it the coaches are the face of the team and should be held accountable. Just like they get all the credit when the team does good. What has not been brought up is the fact that Schurr High would have had the opportunity represent the Almont legue if “somebody” would have caught this sooner. Looks like seniors for both MKHS & SHS were denied the opportunity to make their final HS baseball season a memorable one.

  • jello

    i wonder if this would have been an issue if it was a kid going from a public school to a private one of the problems of today’s high school athletics is the double standard that the public and private schools have i bet it wouldn’t be an issue if it was Mater Dei that this happened to

  • Jack

    Keppel you ruined your whole season for a kid who didn’t do anything for your team. What did you think that because you knew that kids on personal note that you were going to get away with it.